Saturday, November 05, 2005

U.N. secretary general puts off visit to Iran

USA Today:

Posted 11/4/2005

UNITED NATIONS (AFP) — U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan on Friday postponed a planned trip this month to Iran as tension continues over the Iranian president's call for the destruction of Israel.

"The secretary general and the Iranian government have mutually agreed that this is not an appropriate time for him to travel to Iran," said UN spokesman Dujarric. "In light of the ongoing controversy, it would have been difficult to advance the agenda that he had wanted to discuss with the Iranian leadership."

Annan leaves this weekend for a tour that would have taken him to Iran from November 11 to November 13. He will now go to Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Pakistan.

Annan is traveling through Paris, where is scheduled to meet with President Jacques Chirac on Monday, the spokesman said.

The spokesman did not say what the controversy was. But Iran has been bombarded with complaints after President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad last month called for Israel to be "wiped off the map" -- comments that increased concerns over the country's bid to master nuclear fuel technology.


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