A senior Russian foreign ministry official has lashed out at Israel for “inventing” allegations about Iran’s peaceful nuclear program and warned that such fabrications could entail “catastrophic consequences.”

Mikhail Ulyanov, the head of Security and Disarmament Department at Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, denounced Tel Aviv’s hawkish rhetoric on Iran over its nuclear program as “inventions” that “are increasing the tension and could encourage moves towards a military solution with catastrophic consequences."

The top Russian official also described the speculations over Iran’s nuclear program as "noise” and reiterated that such allegations “have political and propaganda objectives, which are far from being inoffensive."

Also on Wednesday, French President Nicolas Sarkozy warned against the repercussions of any military aggression against Iran and underlined diplomacy as the favored solution to Tehran’s nuclear issue.

A day earlier, the deputy head of Iran's Armed Forces Joint Chiefs of Staff, Brigadier General Masoud Jazayeri said the US and Israel are well aware of their high susceptibility to Iran’s counterattacks in case of an aggression against the Islamic Republic.

The remarks come on the heels of a warning by US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta last week, saying there is a strong possibility that Israel will launch an attack on Iran in April, May, or June 2012.

The United States, Israel, and some of their allies accuse Tehran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear program. Washington and Tel Aviv have repeatedly threatened Tehran with the "option" of a military strike against its atomic facilities.

Iran refutes the Western allegations and argues that as a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has every right to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

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News ID 181477