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07:39 GMT +3 hours19 December 2014
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Beijing Reiterates Opposition to Iran Sanctions

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China is still opposed to sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said.

China is still opposed to sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said.

"The Chinese side has long been opposed to any unilateral sanctions on Iran," he was cited by Xinhua as saying.

“Sanctions cannot ultimately help resolve the Iranian nuclear issue, but will only further aggravate and escalate the issue, which will do no good for regional peace and stability."

All parties concerned should intensify dialogue and cooperation to seek an acceptable solution to the issue through negotiations, the spokesman said.

U.S. President Barack Obama told the UN General Assembly on Tuesday that “the United States will do what we must to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”

Obama has maintained that diplomacy and sanctions should be the main levers to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, though he has not ruled out military action.

Obama’s comments came just a day after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad made incendiary statements concerning Israel, saying it has “no roots” in the Middle East.

Iran has insisted its nuclear program is strictly for peaceful purposes.