Thursday, January 29, 2009

More stalling on Iran while they pursue nukes

WASHINGTON (AFP) – Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday urged Iran to show "willingness to engage meaningfully" with the world community and said a US envoy would join multilateral talks next week on Iran's disputed nuclear program.

"With respect to Iran, there is a clear opportunity for the Iranians, as the president expressed in his interview, to demonstrate some willingness to engage meaningfully with the international community," Clinton told reporters.

"Whether or not that hand becomes less clenched is really up to them. But as we look at the opportunities available to us, we're going to have a very broad survey of what we think we can do," Clinton said in her first news briefing.

"In an interview with Al-Arabiya satellite television network, President Barack Obama said Monday the United States would offer Iran an extended hand of diplomacy if the Islamic Republic's leaders "unclenched their fist."

Obama said he would in the next few months lay out a general framework of policy towards Tehran, in the interview with Dubai-based satellite television network.

Susan Rice, the new US ambassador to the United Nations made her debut Monday when she pledged vigorous" and "direct" nuclear diplomacy with Iran but warned of increased pressure if Tehran refuses to halt uranium enrichment.

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