Iran says Tehran ready for nuclear program expansion with other friendly countries

Kurdpa - Iran is ready for expansion with other friendly countries over its nuclear program, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ramin Mehmanparast said at a live press conference in Tehran this morning, IRINN TV channel reported.

\"Countries that wish to work with Iran can always rely on strong cooperation,\" Mehmanparast added. \"We believe it is our right to develop the peaceful program, which falls under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty\".

Speaking about the sanctions imposed on the country, Mehmanparast repeated the words of Supreme Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei, saying that the sanctions make the country move forward.

\"With presidential elections coming up in the U.S., Barack Obama expanded sanctions on Iran, which, however, will not have any effect,\" Mehmanparast underscored.

\"Iranian nation cannot be stopped by sanctions. This is a wrong way to treat our people, who have the rights that must be respected.\"

Touching upon the Iranian pilgrims kidnapped in Syria, Mehmanparast noted that this gesture is definitely a provocation to boost the uprising in the country. He added that everything is being done for quickest release of those remaining in captivity.

Yesterday Today\'s Zaman reported that Syria\'s Free Syrian Army (FSA) has said Turkey mediated the release of 11 kidnapped Iranians, expressing gratitude to Turkey for its help and support for the rebel army.

Gunmen kidnapped 11 Iranian pilgrims heading to the Syrian capital by road from Turkey last Wednesday. The group of 35 pilgrims was on a bus outside the central city of Hama when armed men ambushed it.

Five Iranian technicians were also kidnapped in the Syrian city of Homs in December and Tehran demanded their immediate release.