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Iran 'doing its best' on terror

From CNN Bureau Chief Al Goodman

Kharrazi, right, with Spain's Ana Palacio.
Kharrazi, right, with Spain's Ana Palacio.

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MADRID, Spain (CNN) -- Iran's foreign minister says his country is doing all it can to battle terrorism.

Asked in a news conference whether fighters in Iran are crossing the border to Iraq, Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi said, "We certainly will do our best to not allow any terrorist elements to use Iranian territory.

"Of course, we have a long border. There have been cases that we have arrested people trying to do so, and some have been sent back to Kurdish authorities" in Iraq.

Kharrazi, who talked to reporters after meeting with Ana Palacio, Spain's Foreign Minister, said the danger from the border went both ways.

"Some elements from Iraq have entered Iran to engage in activities against Iranian interests," he said. "Therefore, we are under threat also. There is no reason why we should not do our best to control this."

Kharrazi said Iranians were happy to hear about Saturday's capture of former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. "He is a criminal," Kharrazi said. "Many people are victims of his atrocities."

Though the capture may result in a reduction in the number of attacks against U.S. troops in Iraq, "I do not think it will stop totally -- because of other elements who are not supporters of Saddam who are in Iraq against the occupiers," he said.

"The best way [to stop the attacks] would be to hand over authority to the Iraqi people," he added.

With Kharrazi by her side, Palacio said the international community was expecting Iran to sign the protocol on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, suspend its enrichment of uranium and allow inspectors into the country.

"We expect an exquisite compliance" with the terms sought by the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency, she said.


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