Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Saturday that Tehran has no intention of developing nuclear weapons, but if it wanted to the United States could not stop it.
"We believe nuclear weapons must be abolished and we have no intention of building" such weaponry, Khamenei said in remarks posted on his website.
But, Khamenei said, "if Iran had such intentions, the US could in no way prevent it" from making an atomic bomb, AFP reported.
Khamenei said Iran's stance on weapons of mass destruction was not taken "because the US is unhappy, but because it is based on a religious belief that nuclear weapons are a crime against humanity."
He accused Washington of "deceit" in its approach towards the Iranian nuclear drive, saying: "They want to keep us from our legitimate rights of uranium enrichment and peaceful use of nuclear energy."