US 'firmly behind' diplomatic effort on Iran: Rice

U.S. Rice said on Thursday she did not know if Iran would respond positively this weekend to an offer made by major powers to suspend nuclear work in exchange for incentives.

US 'firmly behind' diplomatic effort on Iran: Rice
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said on Thursday she did not know if Iran would respond positively this weekend to an offer made by major powers to suspend nuclear work in exchange for incentives.

"I don't know," Rice told reporters when asked if she anticipated a positive response from Iran during talks in Geneva this weekend, which a senior U.S. envoy is also attending in a break with U.S. policy.

"The point we are making is that the United States is firmly behind this diplomacy and firmly behind and unified with our allies. Hopefully the Iranians will take that message," she added.

In a US shift that will lead to the highest-level meeting between the two states in three decades, Under Secretary of State William Burns is due to meet Saturday with Iran's top negotiator Saeed Jalili in Solana's presence.

US officials said Wednesday that the "new tactic" amounted to sending a signal to Iran that Washington wanted a negotiated settlement to the deadlock over Iran's nuclear program.

"It sends a strong signal to the world and it sends a strong signal to the Iranian government that the United States is committed to diplomacy," McCormack told reporters.


Agencies
Last Mod: 17 Temmuz 2008, 17:59
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