The Supreme Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Syyed Ali Khamenei, announced on Thursday that Iran has never wanted nuclear weapons, but maintained that the country would never give up its right to use nuclear technology.
His comments came the same day that the International Atomic Energy Agency released a report confirming that Iran has installed “three-quarters of the nuclear centrifuges it needs to complete a deep-underground site for the production of nuclear fuel,” The New York Times wrote.
Speaking at the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Tehran, Khamenei told leaders of developing countries that “the Islamic Republic of Iran considers the use of nuclear, chemical and similar weapons as a great and unforgivable sin. We proposed the idea of ‘Middle East free of nuclear weapons’ and we are committed to it,” Voice of America reported.
He didn’t stop there, but continued by giving a “benevolent piece of advice” to the United States for continuing to support Israel, and lambasting the UN Security council for having a “illogical, unjust and completely undemocratic structure and mechanism.”
UN Security General Ban Ki-moon wasn’t particularly pleased with Khamenei either, and referenced the supreme leader’s incendiary remarks surrounding Israel and the Holocaust, CNN reported.
“I urge all (Non-Aligned Movement) members to work within the principles of the U.N. Charter to resolve disputes peacefully,” Ban said. “But it is not sufficient to focus on lowering tensions between (Non-Aligned Movement) countries, as important as that is. We must prevent conflict between all UN member states.”
Egypt’s President Mohammad Morsi also attended the event, where he bashed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, calling it “oppressive.”
The Non-Aligned Movement is made up of 120 nations that seek not to be aligned with any major world power.