U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday called Iranian President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad's comments about the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks "offensive"
The Iranian leader said "most people around the world" believe the U.S. government
was responsible for the 2001 attacks.? He said it was mostly U.S. government
officials who believed a terrorist group was behind the attacks in New York and at the
Mr. Obama told the BBC Persian that it was especially offensive for Mr. Ahmadinejad
to make his remarks in New York, not far from Ground Zero, the site where the World
Trade Center had stood.
The U.S. and some other Western delegations walked out on Mr. Ahmadinejad
Thursday during his speech to the U.N. General Assembly.
However, Mr. Ahmadinejad defended his comments during a Friday news conference
in New York but added he was "saddened" by the loss of life in the 2001 attacks.
Nearly 3,000 people died in the 2001 attacks, believed to have been masterminded by
al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.
Mr. Obama also commented on Iran's nuclear program in the interview.? He told the
BBC? there are a "host of options" available if Iran does not cooperate with nuclear
He also commented on Iran's apparent repression of opposition activists following last
year's disputed presidential election.? Mr. Obama said the U.S. has no interest in
"meddling in the rights of people to choose their own government."? But he said the
U.S will speak out "forcefully" when it sees a government abusing and oppressing its
Some information for this report was provided by AP.