French Defence Minister Herve Morin cast doubt on reports that Iran had halted its suspected nuclear weapons drive, speaking Thursday on a visit to Washington.
"Coordinated information from a number of intelligence services leads us to believe that Iran has not given up its wish to pursue its (nuclear) program," and is "continuing to develop" it, Morin told reporters.
The US National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), a consensus finding of all 16 US spy agencies, released last month, said that Tehran shelved its nuclear weapons program in 2003.
It also noted however that Tehran has refused to suspend uranium enrichment, which can be a key step towards a nuclear arsenal.
Morin said France wanted the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN nuclear watchdog, to "continue carrying out all the necessary investigations" into Iran's nuclear activities.
Iran has insisted these are aimed at generating power for civilian purposes.
Morin was wrapping up a 36-hour visit to Washington where he met with his US counterpart Robert Gates and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. He gave no details of their talks, describing them as "an exchange of information."
- FRANCE KNOWS SOMETHING - AND THEY JUST SHARED IT.
- I HOPE WE DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT - PREEMPTIVELY, AND SOON.