Blix: Iran Years Away From Nuclear Bomb
By The Associated Press
-- -- OSLO, Norway ? Former U.N. chief weapons
inspector Hans Blix said Monday that Iran is a least five years
away from developing a nuclear bomb, leaving time to peacefully
negotiate a settlement.
Blix, attending an energy conference in western Norway, said he
doubted the U.S. would resort to invading Iran.
"But there is a chance that the U.S. will use bombs or missiles
against several sites in Iran," he was quoted by Norwegian news
agency NTB as saying. "Then, the reactions would be strong, and
would contribute to increased terrorism."
Blix said there is still time for dialogue over Iran's nuclear
enrichment program, which Tehran insists is for peaceful
purposes but the West fears is part of a secret nuclear weapons
"We have time on our side in this case. Iran can't have a bomb
ready in the next five years," Blix was quoted as saying.
Blix, also a former head of the International Atomic Energy
Agency, urged the United States to take its time, as it is doing
in a similar nuclear standoff with North Korea.
"The U.S. has given itself time and is negotiating with North
Korea, while Iran got a very short deadline," he was quoted as