The controversy about the Iranian nuclear program has been revived and many analysts have predicted that it is going to be the main international crisis in 2006. The issues involved in this crisis are simple: Iran claims its right to have full control of the uranium enrichment cycle for pacific use, under articles 1 and 4 of the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Today, Russia is helping Iran to build a plant in Bushehr. Russia suggested that it could be in charge of the uranium enrichment, but Tehran does not want to depend on another state.
The Iranian nuclear program is transparent and regularly controlled by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The problem started since the United States, its allies and Israel believe that the Iranian program is covering a secret military activity. After the failure of negotiations between Iran and the European troika, what pressure would then be exerted against Tehran? Over the next few weeks, the Europeans and the United States will try to get the support of China and Russia, as well as that of the Non-Aligned Countries to take Iran’s issue to the UN Security Council.
Last week, Iran stated that if the Security Council took the case, Tehran would no longer cooperate with the IAEA and could even withdraw from the Non-Proliferation Treaty. In Israel and the United States, the neoconservatives are claiming an armed intervention. [Benjamin Netanyahu-> said that he would do that if he wins the elections. The recent statements from Ahmadineyad have not cooled down the situation.
The only way to resolve the crisis, reactivating negotiations between Washington and Tehran to work out their old differences, is to promote the full denuclearization of the Middle East.

Gulf News
Gulf News is the main newspaper devoted to the entire Persian Gulf . Circulation: more than 90,000 editions. Edited in Dubai in English, it is read largely by the important foreigner community residing in the region.

Iran crisis is likely to explode″, by Patrick Seale, Gulf News, January 15, 2006.