Leaked U.S. diplomatic cables alleged Tuesday that the U.S. government helped block the appointment of an Iranian scientist to a key role on an international climate change panel.
According to the documents released by WikiLeaks to The
Guardian, newspaper, the U.S. privately lobbied U.N. climate chief Rajendra
Pachauri to bar Mostafa Jafari from being elected as co-chairman of a key
working group on the Intergovernmental Panel on
The leaked 2008 cables said Pachauri agreed to the U.S. position on the issue, a claim he denies. A spokesman for Pachauri told The Guardian that the climate chief "neither influenced, nor agreed to influence, the election," saying it was outside his mandate and "impossible" to achieve.
The U.S. State department said in the classified documents that it would be "problematic" and "potentially at odds" with its foreign policy toward Iran to have an Iranian hold the panel position.
The cables call Jafari a "highly qualified scientist," but say his position as a "senior Iranian government employee" would "significantly complicate" funding for the IPCC working group.
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