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    Rowhani's dismissal could force U.S. to launch military operations - paper

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    MOSCOW, July 8 (RIA Novosti) - Analysts believe that the days of Hasan Rowhani, secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, who is currently responsible for negotiations with the West on Iran's nuclear program, are numbered, Kommersant, a leading business daily, reported Friday.

    The country's new president, Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad wants to see a tougher foreign policy line and doubts whether negotiations are needed at all. This turn of events makes an American military operation against Iran virtually inevitable.

    The problem is that Rowhani backed Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani in the recent presidential election. But Ahmadi-Nejad won. And it would be quite logical on his part to get even with all those who supported his rival.

    Although Rowhani yesterday denied rumors of his dismissal, experts are already discussing his possible successor. He is expected to be Ali Larijani, ex-head of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, an ultra-conservative and Ahmadi-Nejad's close friend. If the forecast becomes a reality, then the negotiations with Eurotroika can be given up as a bad job, the newspaper wrote.

    A further scenario does not presuppose a political solution to Iran's nuclear program issue. The U.S., which believes that the military thrust of Tehran's nuclear research needs no proving, has long demanded that the matter be transferred to the UN Security Council, which should impose sanctions. Iran's sole refuge from international isolation has until recently remained the sluggish talks with Eurotroika. If they end, there would no longer be any obstacles to an American plan for solving the Iranian problem. The scenario has already been put to the test in Iraq.

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