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IdentifierCreatedClassificationOrigin
06MUSCAT1316 2006-09-05 13:50:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Muscat
Cable title:  

OMAN URGES MORE DIALOGUE, NOT SANCTIONS, ON IRAN

Tags:   PREL KNNP IR MU 
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OO RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHKUK
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O 051350Z SEP 06
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TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7101
INFO RUCNIRA/IRAN COLLECTIVE
					  C O N F I D E N T I A L MUSCAT 001316 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 09/04/2016
TAGS: PREL KNNP IR MU
SUBJECT: OMAN URGES MORE DIALOGUE, NOT SANCTIONS, ON IRAN
NUCLEAR PROGRAM

REF: A. STATE 145088


B. MUSCAT 1174

C. MUSCAT 1015

Classified By: Ambassador Gary A. Grappo for Reasons 1.4 ((b, d)



1. (C) Summary: Minister Responsible for Foreign Affairs
Yusuf bin Alawi told the Ambassador September 4 that more
dialogue, not sanctions, was needed to reach an agreement
with Iran on its nuclear program. The Iranian Deputy Foreign
Minister had assured Alawi earlier the same day that Tehran
was willing to negotiate over its nuclear activities and
provide "guarantees" on the peaceful nature of its program,
but would not agree to preconditions to talks, including the
suspension of its "right" to enrich uranium. Alawi urged the
U.S. not to push for sanctions against Iran until all efforts
at negotiations had been exhausted. End Summary.



2. (C) In a September 4 meeting with Minister Alawi to
discuss issues related to the upcoming Arab League
Ministerial and Non-Aligned Movement Summit (septels), the
Ambassador described Iran's recent rejection of UNSC
Resolution 1696 (ref A), its disappointing response to the
historic P5 1 proposal, and the urgent need for Tehran to
understand that its defiance of the international community
will have consequences. Alawi replied that he had met just
hours earlier with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Muhammad
Reza Baqeri, who was touring GCC states to explain Iran's
position on its nuclear program.



3. (C) According to Alawi, the Iranian Deputy FM had
emphasized that Tehran was very willing to continue
discussions with the West and the IAEA on its nuclear
program, but without "preconditions," including the
suspension of its uranium enrichment program. Baqeri
reportedly said that Iran was prepared to provide all
necessary guarantees to ensure the international community
that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only, but
that it would not concede its "right" under the Nuclear
Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) to enrich uranium. Alawi
added that Baqeri was adamant that threats or sanctions
against Iran would be completely ineffective in resolving the
standoff over the nuclear issue.



4. (C) Alawi stressed to the Ambassador that Oman was
strongly against Iran acquiring nuclear weapons. He was
firm, however, in stating that a move towards sanctions
against Tehran at this time would be counterproductive and
could precipitate an unnecessary "crisis." Alawi continued
that in his view, there were currently two options regarding
Iran: confrontation or a negotiated agreement.
Confrontation would not be in anyone's interest, particularly
Oman, while continued dialogue could result in an agreement
that would include the strict monitoring of Iran's nuclear
program and close scrutiny of the use and disposal of
materials that could be used to manufacture nuclear weapons.
When the Ambassador pointed out that Iran had refused to
grant complete and unfettered access to all of its
nuclear-related facilities, Alawi replied that this issue
could still be resolved through negotiations and that it was
too soon to "give up" on reaching an agreement.



5. (C) Responding to Alawi's statements, the Ambassador
pushed back that years of Western negotiations with Iran had
led nowhere, and that Tehran had previously engaged in
deception to conceal its nuclear activities. Alawi countered
that that given the enormous implications for regional and
world security, there was "no rush" to take a confrontational
approach. An early push for sanctions, he stated, could
drive Tehran to take a more aggressive posture and perhaps
embolden Iranian hard-liners to call for development of
nuclear weapons as the only "deterrent" to alleged U.S.
designs to topple the Iranian regime. Sanctions might be
warranted at some point in the future, Alawi added, but only
after the international community had exhausted all efforts
to negotiate an agreement to guarantee the peaceful nature of
Iran's nuclear program.
GRAPPO