Iran opened an "alternative" nuclear disarmament summit in Tehran on Saturday, bringing together representatives of 60 countries including Russia and China to slam U.S. nuclear policy and encourage nations to pull out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
"The deceptive policy by the sole nuclear offender, which falsely claims to be advocating the non-proliferation of nuclear arms while doing nothing substantive for this cause, will never succeed," Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who called the U.S. an "atomic criminal," said at the two-day gathering on the heels of President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaTo Build Back Better, improving Black women's health is a must Rahm Emanuel has earned M since leaving Chicago's city hall: report 60 years after the Peace Corps, service still brings Americans together MORE's 47-nation Nuclear Security Summit.
Some representatives of countries that came to Obama's summit -- including France, Pakistan and Turkey -- also showed up in Tehran, according to the Associated Press. While the majority of leaders who came to Washington were heads of state, Iran counted "seven or eight" foreign ministers and deputy foreign ministers among the representatives.
"The Security Council has openly turned into a tool for the implementation of the policies of a few bullying governments," Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told the conference in a series of hits at the U.S.
The rhetoric continued on the sidelines of the conference, according to the semi-official Fars News Agency.
"The United States' threats against certain countries are no different from the acts carried out by terrorists," Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehman-Parast told reporters.
"Those countries possessing nuclear weapons are the main source of concern as they are deemed as a permanent threat," he added.
A senior military commander said that Iranian forces were ready to "destroy the U.S. forces" should any military move be made against Iranian nuclear installations.
"First we should wait and see whether they are able to take such a move or not since we have been prepared to destroy the U.S. forces and equipments in the region for the last 10 years," Armed Forces Chief of Staff Major General Hassan Firouzabadi told reporters.
"As I have already announced, if the U.S. attacks Iran, none of its soldiers will go back home alive," he said.