July 10/09. U.S. President Barack
Obama said Friday “the world” would not
allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons, a day after a senior Iranian official
vowed his country would not back down "even one step" over its nuclear work.
"We're not going to just wait
indefinitely and allow for the development of a nuclear weapon... and wake
up one day and find ourselves in a much worse situation and unable to act,"
Obama said at the close of the G8 summit concluded in Italy.
The president stressed that he and
others were not looking for their summit partners to embrace sanctions at
this week's meeting. Instead, he said, "What we wanted was exactly what we
got - a statement of condemnation about
Iran's actions in the wake of its disputed presidential election."
Obama said Friday that G8 leaders
voiced their concern about what he called the appalling events surrounding
the recent elections and the violence that followed.
"The leaders assembled at L'Aquila
also addressed the threat of nuclear proliferation in Iran," he said, "with
a strong statement calling on Iran to fulfill its responsibilities without
"This notion that we were trying to
get sanctions or that this was a forum where we could get sanctions was not
accurate," the president said. "I think the real story here was consensus in
that [G8] statement, including Russia, which doesn't make statements like
that lightly," he said. "Now the other story there was the agreement that we
will reevaluate Iran's posture towards negotiating the cessation of a
nuclear weapons policy."
"We'll evaluate that at the G20
meeting in September," Obama said. "I think that what that does is, it
provides a time frame. The international community has said, 'Here's a door
you can walk through that allows you to lessen tensions and more fully join
the international community.'"
He added: "If Iran chooses not to
walk through that door, then you have on record the G8 to begin with and, I
think, potentially a lot of other countries."
Obama said his hope is that
the Iranian leadership will recognize that world
opinion is clear. –