Saturday, December 31, 2005

AJC Launches International Campaign to Stop a Nuclear Iran

NEW YORK, Dec. 30 /U.S. Newswire/ -- The American
Jewish Committee is urging world leaders to unite in a
vigorous international effort to defuse the Iranian
nuclear threat now.

"President Ahmadinejad has made crystal clear his
determination to ignore the international community,
to develop nuclear weapons, and to use the threat of a
nuclear arsenal to advance his regime's extremist
agenda," said AJC Executive Director David A. Harris.
"The time for complacency is long past. Urgent action
is needed to stop Iran from crossing the nuclear

U.S. and other experts have projected that Iran will
be able to produce nuclear weapons within several
years and to master the technology to convert and
enrich uranium for that purpose as early as this
spring. While any nation in the range of Iranian
ballistic missiles is a potential target, the Iranian
leader in recent weeks has repeated several times his
intention to annihilate Israel.

"The world must not allow itself to be in the position
of relying on President Ahmadinejad's, or the reigning
mullahs', self-restraint or good judgment to avoid a
nuclear calamity," said Harris. "The possibility of
Iranian nuclear weapons falling into the hands of
Iran's terrorist proxies -- particularly Hezbollah --
is horrifying." According to the U.S. State
Department, Iran is the leading state sponsor of
terrorism, and even without nuclear weapons, has
proven to be a menace.

In advocacy efforts with governments around the world,
and with the UN, AJC is seeking implementation of a
range of measures to halt Iran's progress toward
nuclear weapons capability.

"Most importantly, states should cease providing any
assistance to Iran's nuclear and military programs,
and should bring the issue of Iran's violation of
non-proliferation agreements in its development of
nuclear weapons capability before the UN Security
Council," stated an AJC policy statement released this
week. For a full copy of the statement, visit

Among the steps AJC proposes are that governments
recall their envoys to Iran and expel Iranian
diplomats from their respective countries, suspend
Iran from a range of international organizations, and
impose economic sanctions.

"Until Iran desists from a nuclear program it sought
to conceal from the world for the last two decades,
and which poses a grave threat to regional and world
peace, it cannot be permitted to benefit from business
as usual in bilateral or multilateral relations,"
Harris said.

As part of an accelerated public education effort, AJC
this week cosponsored a Chanukah vigil outside the
Iranian interests section in Washington, D.C., where
candles on a menorah were lit as protestors spoke out
against the Iranian threat and President Ahmadinejad's
recent reckless statements on Israel and the


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