Thursday, August 09, 2007

Bush warns Maliki on trusting Iran; Calls Iran 'dangerous'; Says 'there will be consequences' for Iranian involvement in Iraq

Left: Prime Minister Maliki with Iran's president Ahmadinejad yesterday in Tehran.

Bush warns Iran over alleged Iraq arms; also warns Iraqi PM

US President George W. Bush today warned Iran that there would be 'consequences' for the country if it has been shipping weapons, including sophisticated roadside bombs, into Iraq.

Bush said high-level US talks with Iranian officials in Baghdad aimed 'to send the message that there will be consequences for people transporting, delivering, EFPs -- highly sophisticated IEDS (improvised explosive devices) -- to kill Americans in Iraq.'

At the same time, Bush warned Iraq that there would be 'a price to pay' if the United States caught Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki playing a 'non-constructive role' with Iran.

Read the rest at Fores

Bush Warns Iraq's Al-Maliki Over Iran Role

U.S. President George W. Bush has called Iran "very dangerous" to world security and warned Shi'ite Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki against playing a "non-constructive role" with Tehran.

Bush made his comments at a news conference in Washington. He spoke after al-Maliki, on a visit to Tehran, said that he appreciates Iran's "positive and constructive" role in Iraq.

Bush said the United States believes Tehran is a threat because Washington believes the country is secretly developing nuclear weapons and has called for the destruction of Israel.

The United States also accuses Iran of smuggling weapons to Iraq -- a charge Bush reiterated.

"One of the main reasons that I asked [U.S.] Ambassador [to Iraq Ryan] Crocker to meet with Iranians inside Iraq was to send the message that there will be consequences for people transporting, delivering [explosively formed penetrators], highly sophisticated [improvised explosive devices] that kill Americans in Iraq," said Bush.

From RFE

Bush says Iran is destabilizing force in Iraq

President George W. Bush insisted on Thursday that Iran is a destabilizing force in Iraq despite Tehran's assertion to Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki that it is helping secure his country.

Calling Iran a "very troubling nation" that should be isolated, Bush warned during a White House news conference: "When we catch you playing a nonconstructive role (in Iraq), there will be a price to pay."

Bush spoke as Maliki, facing deepening political woes at home and U.S. criticism for lack of progress in bridging sectarian divisions, won pledges of support from Shi'ite Iran during a visit to the neighboring country.

Playing down signs of warming ties between Baghdad and Tehran, Bush -- struggling to rally U.S. public support for the unpopular Iraq war -- voiced confidence that he and Maliki see eye-to-eye on Iran as a threat to Iraqi security.

"If the signal (from Maliki) is that Iran is constructive, I will have to have a heart-to-heart with my friend, the prime minister. Because I don't believe they are constructive," Bush said. "I don't think he, in his heart of heart, think they're constructive either."

From the Washington Post

Bush warns Iraq over ties with Iran

US President George W. Bush sternly warned Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki Thursday against cozying up to Iran, amid what Washington sees as unsettling signs of warming Baghdad-Tehran relations...

The US president warned that "there will be consequences" for any Iranians shipping weapons, including sophisticated roadside bombs, inside Iraq, and branded Tehran "a destabilizing influence" in the Middle East.

Bush cited Iran's support for Lebanon's Shiite militant group Hezbollah; Tehran's suspect nuclear program; and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's anti-Israel warnings, which he said Washington "cannot live with."

"My message to the Iranian people is, 'You can do better than this current government. You don't have to be isolated. You don't have to be in a position where you can't realize your full economic potential,'" Bush said.

Read the rest at New Straits Times

Related Link:
Maliki in Iran for talks with Ahmadinejad

Related Link:
Maliki to visit Turkey, Iran next week

Related Link:
Military 'Sources': Sadr back in Iran

Related Link:
Opinion (Chris Toensing): Persian ghosts

Related Link:
Source: Larijani tells Maliki Iraq 'part of the United States' and 'part of the danger' to Iran

Related Link:
Iran's top national security official in surprise visit to Iraq for talks with leaders, Maliki

Related Link:
Report: Shia members of Iraq government set up 'shadow' spy agency

Related Link:
Report: Maliki plane refused permission to cross Iranian airspace on trip to Japan, flight diverted, delayed

Related Link:
Perspective: Iraq returns to its Persian heritage

Related Link:
Perspective: An Iraq-Iran trade boom

Related Link:
Perspective: Iranian influence soaring in Iraq

Related Link:
Analysis: Has U.S. prodded a rebirth of the Persian Empire?

Related Link:
Analysis: With Iran Ascendant, U.S. Is Seen at Fault

Related Link:
Perspective: Iran's Influence Grows As Iraqis See Advantages

Related Link:
Perspective: Behind the Rise of the Shi'ites

Related Link:
Iraqi PM visits Iran; Iran offers 'security help'