Monday, June 19, 2006

US Rejected Iran's Dialogue Offer in 2003

jun 20,2006
nuclear iran--It has been revealed that Iran made a proposal for broad dialogue on issues such as Iran’s nuclear programs, recognition of Israel and support for Palestinian militant groups to the United States three years ago, but was rejected by the White House.

The Washington Post wrote Tehran sent a fax to the Near East bureau of the State Department in 2003 suggesting dialogue for issues causing crisis between the two countries. “Top Bush administration officials, convinced the Iranian government was on the verge of collapse,” and undermined the proposal sent with the initiative of the Swiss ambassador, the news read.

There are several disagreements between the two countries that broke off relations after the 1979 Iranian revolution.

Both countries still disapprove direct talks and use diplomatic channels for communications. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinajad last wrote Bush a letter including several proposals but was refuted by the Bush Administration.

Iran’s proposal three years ago included a series of Iranian aims for the talks, such as ending sanctions, full access to peaceful nuclear technology and a recognition of its "legitimate security interests."

In exchange, Iran agreed to put a series of U.S. aims on the agenda, including full cooperation on nuclear safeguards, "decisive action" against terrorists, coordination in Iraq, ending "material support" for Palestinian organizations and accepting the Saudi initiative for a two-state solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Iran’s Offer was a Missed Chance

The newspaper emphasized that the US changed last month its Iran policy and agreed to participate in negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program with European countries.

The newspaper cited Iran’s offer in 2003 as a great opportunity, which was missed. Senior director of the National Security Council Flynt Leverett said Iran was not enriching uranium at that time; it was a serious and respectable offer.

Former National Intelligence Officer for the Near East and South Asia Paul Pillar noted there were many opportunities that were missed in the Iran issue.

President of the Council on Foreign Relations Richard N. Haass said Iran’s offer was rejected due to the prejudices of those in the Bush administration who believed there would be a regime shift in Iran.

Trita Parsi, an Iranian and Middle East specialist at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace said he believed Iran, at the time this offer was made, was ready to change its attitude towards Israel.
source:zaman online
posted by ali ghannadi-irannuk


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