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Larijani: US Interests Section in Iran is 'Misleading' gesture

Press TV - Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani terms the alleged idea of establishing a US diplomatic interests section in Tehran a misleading gesture.

"Americans would have responded to Tehran's request of establishing direct flights from Iran to America if they were sincere in their policy, but the request has remained unanswered for two years," Larijani told reporters on the sidelines of a national conference in Tehran Thursday.

Earlier, several media outlets reported that the US was considering establishing an interests section in Tehran to process Iranian visa applications to the US and to serve as an American cultural center despite 30 years of severed ties between the two countries.

Currently, the Swiss embassy in Tehran houses a US special interests section to communicate messages from Washington to Iran's Foreign Ministry and to handle the affairs of US citizens inside the Islamic Republic.

US State Secretary Condoleezza Rice declined to confirm or deny the proposal but said that Washington was eager to allow more Iranians to visit the States.

At a news briefing Tuesday, State Department Deputy Spokesman Tom Casey also reiterated that despite its differences with the Iranian government the United States was looking for ways to reach out to Iran's citizenry.

The issues with the current Iranian government including its nuclear program do not translate into hostility or animosity on the part of the US toward Iranians at large, Casey said.

"We're continually looking for ways to be able to find new means to reach out to the Iranian people."

... Payvand News - 06/26/08 ... --

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