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Last Updated: Saturday, 12 January 2008, 19:10 GMT
Tehran warns US over nuclear row
By Jon Leyne
BBC News, Tehran

IAEA chief Mohamed Elbaradei (left) and Iran's Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Photo: 12 January 2007
Ayatollah Khamenei (right) said the US should not try "to break Iran"
Tehran has warned the United States not to try and use the dispute over the Iranian nuclear programme to bring Iran to its knees.

The warning came from supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei during a meeting with the head of the UN nuclear watchdog, Mohamed ElBaradei.

Ayatollah Khamenei insisted that Iran was not building a nuclear bomb.

He also said that the issue should not even be considered by the United Nations Security Council.

Meanwhile, a senior Iranian military official accused the Americans of being warmongers, following the incident in which Washington claimed that Iranian patrol boats swarmed around their warships in the Gulf.

The official said the incident did show Iran's determination to defend the Straits of Hormuz - the strategic waterway at the mouth of the Gulf.

So, whatever really happened in that naval confrontation, the verbal skirmishing continues as fierce as ever.

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