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June 17, 2013 11:34 am

Report: Following Rohani Victory, West, Iran Eager to Resume Nuclear Talks

avatar by Zach Pontz

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Iran's President-elect Hassan Rohani. Photo: Wikipedia.

The Obama administration and its allies in Europe intend to push for the resumption of talks with Iran over its nuclear weapons program, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday night.

The Journal writes that Western countries were “surprised and encouraged by Hassan Rohani’s election as Iran’s next president,” and want to resume negotiations no later than August.

The London-based Arab daily Al Hayat reported  Monday that sources close to Rohani say he too wants to renew stalled nuclear talks with the West.

Rohani plans to hold direct dialogue with each of the six world powers (the five permanent members of the Security Council and Germany) separately, the report said.

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Diplomacy between Iran and global powers has been frozen since April, and American and European officials believe that Iran’s overall nuclear policy will remain tightly controlled by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, according to the Journal’s report.

The report also stated that Washington and Brussels “are eager to quickly test whether Mr. Rohani’s unexpected victory could pressure Mr. Khamenei into softening his position on the nuclear issue or scaling back Tehran’s broader rift with the West.”

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