Bush Says He's Watching Iran

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WHITE HOUSE (AP) - President Bush says he's paying close attention to threats made against Israel by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Bush tells the German newspaper Bild, "We need to take it seriously, and when he says he wants to destroy Israel, the world needs to take that very seriously."

The Iranian leader has said Israel should be "wiped off the map."

Bush calls that "a threat to an ally of the United States and Germany." And the president adds "what he's also saying is, if he's willing to destroy one country, he'd be willing to destroy other countries."

The president says his first choice is use diplomacy in the the standoff with Iran over its nuclear program.

He tells ARD German television, "an armed Iran will be a threat to peace."

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)