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Last Updated: Thursday, 14 April, 2005, 02:43 GMT 03:43 UK
Israel 'not planning Iran attack'
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon
Sharon discussed Iran's nuclear plans this week with Bush
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has said Israel is not planning a unilateral military attack on Iran aimed at destroying its nuclear capability.

He told the US television network CNN that the issue was a problem for the international community.

But he warned Iran could soon solve "technical problems" regarding the building of nuclear weapons which would be "the point of no return".

Iran says its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes.

Intelligence shared

American officials confirmed that Mr Sharon and Mr Bush discussed the issue at their talks earlier this week in Texas.

White House spokesman Scott McLellan said Mr Bush supported European diplomatic efforts to get Iran to abandon what he described as its nuclear weapons ambitions.

"Israel is not leading the struggle," Mr Sharon told CNN television network.

"Of course we exchange intelligence, we exchange views, we discuss (these) issues, but it's not that we are planning any military attack on Iran."

Mr Sharon in his meeting on Tuesday with US Vice President Dick Cheney presented evidence, including satellite images, on Iran's nuclear programme, according to Israeli media.

Israel has warned for many years about the dangers of Iran becoming a nuclear power.

When questioned on Israel's own nuclear weapons programme, Mr Sharon said: "Israel will not be the first one to use or to possess a nuclear weapon."

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