Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told reporters in Bali that Iran’s nuclear program has been turned into a political issue and the impasse over the program should be resolved directly between Iran and the United States. (IRNA, 8 November)
Ahmadinejad’s remarks were the latest by a senior Iranian official suggesting that Iran-U.S. direct negotiations over the country’s nuclear program are not only acceptable but desirable. On Wednesday, Mohammad Javad Larijani, secretary of Iran’s High Commission for Human Rights and brother of both the speaker of Majlis and the Judiciary chief, said “To protect the interests of the regime, we would negotiate with the U.S. or anyone else.”
Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence also posted a report on its Website on Wednesday saying to avoid military conflict over the nuclear issue, Iran needs to take “diplomatic and political measures and use the potentials of international bodies, which is a necessary and less costly option.”
The MoI report, titled “Reasons and Obstacles of a Military Attack by the Zionist Regime Against Iran,” also makes a clear distinction between positions by the Israeli government and the U.S. administration. It says President Obama “hopes to solve this issue peacefully and through diplomacy.”
In Bali, Ahmadinejad also told reporters that Iran needs to examine, “Why and who broke diplomatic relations with the U.S. some 33 years ago.” He added that he believed in existence of diplomatic relationships based on mutual respect.
Photo credit: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at a press conference in Bali, Indonesia. 8 Novermber 2012. (IRNA)