Analysis

Iran Tries to Fool U.S. With Offer of One-on-One Talks
An Iranian woman walks past a Shahab-2 surface-to-surface missile displayed on September 23, 2012, in front of a large portrait of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in a square south of Tehran to mark the 'Sacred Defense Week,' commemorating Iran's eight-year war with Iraq. (ATTA KENARE/AFP/GettyImages)
October 22, 2012
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| Middle East and North Africa
Summary
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Despite official denials by American and Iranian officials, LIGNET believes an October 21 New York Times article claiming that Iran agreed in principle to one-on-one talks with the United States after the U.S. presidential election is accurate. While Obama officials may have leaked word of this agreement to influence the presidential election, Iran probably agreed to the bilateral meeting to buy time to advance its nuclear program and to drive a wedge between the United States and its European allies.
Obama officials denied the report but the New York Times quoted an Obama administration spokesman who said it is open to more talks with Iran. Iran also denied the report but said it anticipated a resumption of multilateral talks in late November. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said yesterday that he didn't know about any U.S. plans for bilateral talks with Iran.

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