Libya was close to making nuclear bomb, Gaddafi says

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    Libya was close to making nuclear bomb, Gaddafi says
    Agencies
    Published: July 15, 2009, 14:46


    Sharm Al Shaikh: Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi said his country was close to making a nuclear bomb before it voluntarily dismantled its atomic programme.

    He called on Iran not to pursue any efforts to acquire a nuclear capability.

    "If Iran wants to enrich uranium to make an atomic bomb, we are against this," Gaddafi said on Wednesday in Sharm Al Shaikh, Egypt, at a summit of a 118-member group of developing nations.

    UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown last week praised Gaddafi's "brave" move to give up his country's nuclear weapons programme at a meeting with the Libyan leader at the Group of Eight summit in L'Aquila, Italy. Libya's decision is an example that other countries should follow, Brown told Gaddafi.

    Libya agreed in December 2003 to end programmes to develop nuclear and chemical weapons and permitted inspections by the US and Britain. The US lifted economic sanctions in 2004 after the removal of nuclear materials and missile-guidance gear with Libya's cooperation.

    Iran has stepped up its enrichment of uranium and continues to block attempts by international monitors to probe whether it is secretly developing weapons, the UN nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, said June 5.

    Iran, the world's fourth-largest oil producer, says its nuclear programme is aimed only at generating electricity. Enriched uranium can either be used to make a nuclear warhead or fuel power stations.

    Libya spent years to get to the stage where it was "close to making an atomic bomb," Gaddafi said. "But when we got to that stage the world had changed, our ideas had matured. We looked around and didn't find an enemy."

    Gulfnews: Libya was close to making nuclear bomb, Gaddafi says
     
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