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  Thursday, July 9, 2020
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Russia hopes that the United States will begin a dialogue
Russia hopes that the United States will begin a dialogue with Iran after President-elect Barack Obama assumes office, Russia's UN ambassador said.

During his presidential campaign, Obama said it was necessary to start a dialogue with Tehran, which Washington suspects of pursuing a nuclear weapons program. The administration of President George Bush has steadfastly avoided direct talks with the Islamic country on the issue.

Vitaly Churkin said at a news conference late Thursday that if the United States began talks with Iran, the response from Tehran would be positive, adding that "it is simply necessary to continue political process on Iran."

"I believe it will be interesting to see how Obama's administration will join this process. We heard inspiring statements from Obama's team that demonstrate the wish to enter a dialogue with Iran," Churkin said.

Tehran is under three sets of relatively mild UN Security Council sanctions over its refusal to suspend its nuclear program, which many Western powers led by the United States say is a covert nuclear weapons program, a claim that Iran has dismissed.

Russia has called on the Iran Six group, which also involves the United States, China, France, Britain and Germany, to support the work of the UN nuclear watchdog, while the United States wants to strengthen sanctions against Iran.


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