Monday, Dec 01, 2008
Iran said on Monday U.S. President-elect Barack Obama’s comments about its nuclear program were an indication Washington’s stance toward Tehran had not changed.
The remarks by Foreign Ministry spokesman Hassan Qashqavi, quoted by the ISNA news agency, were the latest by an Iranian official playing down the prospect of improved ties between the two old foes when Obama takes office in January.
Obama has said he would harden sanctions on Iran but also held out the possibility of direct talks. After his election win last month, he called for an international effort to stop Iran developing a nuclear bomb, saying it was “unacceptable.”
Qashqavi said future relations between Iran and the United States, which severed ties with the Islamic Republic shortly after its 1979 revolution that ousted the U.S.-backed shah, would depend on Washington.
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“One of Obama’s conditions for the establishment of ties with Iran has been the cessation of Iran’s uranium enrichment which in itself is indicative of lack of change in Washington’s perspective toward Iran,” he said according to ISNA.
Echoing that line, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Sheikhuleslam, also quoted by ISNA on Monday, said “nothing has changed with the coming of Obama.”
The United States is spearheading a drive to isolate the Islamic Republic, the world’s fourth-largest crude producer, over nuclear work the West suspects is aimed at making bombs.
This article was posted: Monday, December 1, 2008 at 12:01 pm