- May 19, 2004
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
- Libertarian - Right
MAINZ, Germany (Reuters) - President Bush said Wednesday that European diplomatic efforts to rein in Iran's nuclear program were only just beginning and that comparisons with Iraq were wrong.
"Iran is not Iraq. We just started the diplomatic efforts and I want to thank our friends for taking the lead. We will work with them to convince the mullahs that they need to give up their nuclear ambitions," Bush told a news conference.
Bush has repeatedly said the U.S. launched its war on Iraq only after then leader Saddam Hussein had failed to comply with a series of U.N. resolutions over a number of years.
Mindful of past divisions in the lead-up to the Iraq war, Bush said after talks with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder it was vital for Iran to hear the world speak with one voice.
Bush repeated Wednesday his verbal support to efforts by Britain, France and Germany to negotiate a deal under which Iran would abandon uranium enrichment that could be used to make a bomb in return for trade benefits and security guarantees.
"You know yesterday I was asked about a U.S. decision and I said all options are on the table. That's part of our position. But I also reminded people that diplomacy is just beginning." Bush said Tuesday the idea that he was preparing to bomb Iran was "ridiculous" but also added that "all options are on the table," a clear reference to possible military action.