IAEA Report : Iran Has Defied U.N. Security Council

The International Atomic Energy Agency said Friday that Iran had enriched uranium and persists with related activities in its nuclear program in defiance of the U.N. Security Council.

The eight-page report, obtained by The Associated Press, said that after more than three years of an IAEA investigation, "the existing gaps in knowledge continue to be a matter of concern."

"Any progress in that regard requires full transparency and active cooperation by Iran," said the report, written by IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei.

The finding set the stage for a showdown in the U.N. Security Council, which is expected to meet next week and start a process that could result in punitive measures against the Islamic republic.

But Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said no Security Council resolution could make Iran give up its nuclear program.

"The Iranian nation won't give a damn about such useless resolutions," Ahmadinejad told thousands of people Friday in Khorramdareh in northwestern Iran.

"Today, they want to force us to give up our way through threats and sanctions but those who resort to language of coercion should know that nuclear energy is a national demand and by the grace of God, today Iran is a nuclear country," state-run television quoted him as saying.

In one of the few new developments in the IAEA's more than three-year investigation, the report concluded that Iran used undeclared plutonium in conducting small-scale separation experiments.

"The agency cannot exclude the possibility ... that the plutonium analyzed by the agency was derived from source(s) other than declared by Iran," the report said. Plutonium separation is one of the suspect "dual use" activities that could be used for a weapons program.

But the agency was stonewalled by Iran's refusal to give more information on other key issues _ details of its centrifuge programs that are used to enrich uranium, information on drawings that show how to form fissile uranium into warheads, and apparent links between Iran's military establishment and what it says is a civilian nuclear program.

The Security council is likely to consider punitive measures against the Islamic republic. While Russia and China have been reluctant to endorse sanctions, the council's three other veto-wielding members say a strong response is in order.

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