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Iran May Have Nuclear Weapon by Next Year, U.K.’s Fox Says

Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- U.K. Defense Secretary Liam Fox said the West should be prepared for Iran to develop a working nuclear weapon by next year.

In Parliament in London today, Fox was asked by lawmakers about the assessment by Israel’s outgoing head of intelligence, Meir Dagan, that Iran wouldn’t be able to produce a nuclear weapon before 2015, three or four years later than earlier Israeli estimates. Fox said he thought Dagan’s assessment could be too optimistic.

“We know from previous experience, not least from what happened in North Korea, that the international community can be caught out assuming that things are more rosy than they are,” Fox said. “We should, therefore, be entirely clear that it is entirely possible that Iran may be on the 2012 end of that spectrum, and act in accordance with that warning.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Kitty Donaldson in London at kdonaldson1@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net.

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