US sees historic opportunity to solve Iran dispute

US sees historic opportunity to solve Iran dispute
Thu Oct 10, 2013 08:17:38

A top US official has expressed hope that the new trend among Western and Iranian authorities to resolve Tehran’s nuclear issue would be historic opportunity.

"We should be cautious but cognizant of potentially historic opportunities," Rose Gottemoeller, US assistant secretary of state for arms control told a UN disarmament committee on Wednesday.

"The United States is ready to talk. We are ready to listen. We are ready to work hard and we hope that every country in this room is ready to do the same," Gottemoeller said.

"The road toward the next steps might not be familiar and it will require difficult negotiations and complicated diplomacy," she added.

Western nations say they are waiting for the Iranian government to follow up on statements made by President Hassan Rouhani that his country wants an accord to end western doubts about Iran's peaceful nuclear drive.

The United States, Britain and France accuse Iran of seeking a nuclear bomb capability. Iran denies the charge and says that its nuclear program is just for peaceful purposes under international surveillance.

Gottemoeller claimed, "We must continue to push to bring Iran back into line with its international nuclear obligations.”

European Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton - negotiating for the United States, Russia, Britain, France, Germany and China - is to meet with Iranian negotiators in Geneva next Tuesday.

Western diplomats say this will be a first chance to test Iran's intentions. Rouhani said he wanted a deal within a year.


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