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FACTDROP: U.S. aims to "unite the world" against Iran


U.S. aims to "unite the world" against Iran

U.S. officials uncovered a plot to bomb the Saudi Ambassador to the United States allegedly launched by a special operations unit inside the Iranian military.

Πηγή: CBS News
Oct 12 2011


WASHINGTON - The Obama administration was taking its case against Iran to the world Wednesday, trying to stir up an international response to charges that the Islamic republic plotted to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the U.S.

"It's critically important that we unite the world in the isolation of and dealing with the Iranians," Vice President Joe Biden said on "The Early Show" Wednesday. "That's the surest way to be able to get results."

Mr. Obama's top national security aides have said the administration will lobby for the imposition of new international sanctions as well as for individual nations to expand their own penalties against Iran.

The State Department sent a cable to all American embassies and consulates around the world telling them to put the Iran case before their host governments. The officials said the cable, sent late Tuesday by Deputy Secretary of State William Burns and classified secret, tells them to detail the evidence against Iran as presented by federal prosecutors.

The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity to describe the classified cable, said the document instructs diplomats to ask nations to consider appropriate steps in response to the alleged scheme. The cable does not suggest any specific measures against Iran, the officials said.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice is to individually brief members of the U.N. Security Council on the foiled plot Wednesday, the officials said.

Biden said that U.S. action against Iran could go beyond sanctions, but added that "we're not going there yet."

Biden said the Iranians "have not only decided to assassinate someone, they have taken on the basis in which ... nations deal with one another." However, he refused to speculate on whether the alleged plot was undertaken at the behest of the upper reaches of Iran's government

In other broadcast interviews Wednesday, Biden called the purported plot "really over the top."

Other top administration officials expressed similar sentiments.

In comments Wednesday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the plot signaled a "dangerous escalation" of Iran's support for terrorism.

In an Associated Press interview Tuesday, Clinton said "this really, in the minds of many diplomats and government officials, crosses a line that Iran needs to be held to account for."

She said she and President Barack Obama want to "enlist more countries in working together against what is becoming a clearer and clearer threat" from Iran.

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