US Officials ‘Urge’ Iran to Return to Nuclear Talks

Fact That Iranian Officials Repeatedly Offered Such Talks Goes Unnoticed

In so much as they are not generally part of official US foreign policy, it is entirely possible that they simply hadn’t kept track of the issue, but US Energy Secretary Steven Chu and his deputy Daniel Poneman sounded off on the Iran issue today, “urging” Iran to return to nuclear talks with the US.

The most recent offer of talks on the issue actually came from Iran, and was angrily rejected by US State Department officials and later the White House, who insisted that they had no interest in participating in any such talks. Just days later, President Obama claimed “openness” to the talks, but made no specific offer to participate in them.

By all indications the Iranian government has remained willing to engage in actual talks, while US comments on the matter have been a combination of vague interest in talks interspersed with occasional threats to attack.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reiterated his own support for additional talks today, saying that he thought there was a good chance” that such talks would take place at some point. US officials responded by suggesting the offer for talks was not serious.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.