Talks between Iran and Europe resumed in Vienna today concerning Iran's nuclear program. The U.S. is accusing Iran of attempting to develop nuclear weapons while Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reassures that the program is intended to generate electricity. When questioned in a press conference Monday about Iran's desire to enrich Uranium for electrical power purposes, U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney answered, "right…. and the war in Iraq is over our concern for the Iraqi people…. Iranian officials are shocked and offended by the U.S. accusation. They insist they are a peaceful nation and that they have not said or done anything to indicate an interest in producing weapons of mass destruction. European officials were quick to remind them of a statement made by President Ahmadinejad calling for Israel to be "wiped off the map." Iranian foreign minister Reza Asefi defended the President, saying that Ahmadinejad was, "only kidding" and had "had a few, if you know what I mean." Asefi continued, calling westerners "emotional," and added, "when he said wipe Israel off the map; I'm sure he was referring to the good old-fashioned manual slaughter of the Jewish people living there, not the actual geographic region. Yeah, like we'd unleash environmental disaster in our own backyard. That's perfectly good land that could be given to an Islamic nation. Geez, you people need to relax." U.N. officials have proposed that Iran have the uranium enriched in another country, like Russia, and import it, so that other nations can rest assured knowing it is only being used for energy. At first President Ahmadinejad agreed to consider the proposal. U.S. Officials were hopeful until intelligence later learned that he had his fingers crossed behind his back. With the issue continuing to go on unresolved, a peaceful solution is looking less and less likely. Even so, negotiations will continue, with the diplomats drawing up new solutions as fast as the Iranians can reject them. The U.S. and Europe are hoping to reach a compromise with Iran within the next few weeks, so that they can refocus their attention on ignoring nuclear weapons programs in North Korea.
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