Ahmadinejad sends letter to George W. Bush
Tuesday, May 9, 2006United States (US) and Iran. Iranian government spokesman Gholam-Hossein Elham said that Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has sent a letter to the U.S. president George W. Bush proposing "new solutions for getting out of international problems and the current fragile situation of the world".For the first time in three decades, direct and at least partially public diplomatic communication will commence between the
Mr Gholam-Hossein Elham did not say whether the letter mentioned the nuclear dispute, one of the diplomatic problems currently straining relations between Iran and the USA. This information arrived one day after the Iranian parliament announced that it might retract from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) if Western pressure over its programme was to increase.
Differing reports have been made as to whether or not the letter will be made public, and if so, when. In its online report of 8 May 2006, 09:25 GMT, the BBC quoted Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi as saying that the contents of the letter would be made public once Bush had received it. The updated version of the report of 8 May 2006, 14:52 GMT, quotes Asefi as saying that the contents would be made public "at the right time". An ABC report quoted Gholam-Hossein Elham as saying "it is not an open letter."
Iran's foreign affairs minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, delivered the letter to the United States' interests section in the Swiss embassy in Tehran on Monday. The United States has not held diplomatic relations with Iran since the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis.
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said "this letter isn't it. This letter is not the place that one would find an opening to engage on the nuclear issue or anything of the sort."
"It isn't addressing the issues that we're dealing with in a concrete way," she added.
John R. Bolton, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, also read the letter, saying, "I think it is typical of Iran that when major decisions are about to be taken ... that they have tried to throw sand in the eyes of the proponents of the action. That's what this may be."
The letter has since been put on an official Iranian website, and on Tuesday, Ahmadinejad said "the letter to US President George Bush carries the Iranian nation's views and comments on international issues as well as suggestions for resolving the many problems facing humanity."
- "Full text of President Ahmadinejad's letter to George Bush" — , May 9, 2006
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- "US dismisses Iranian president's letter" — , May 9, 2006
- "Ahmadinejad sends letter to Bush" — , May 8, 2006
- Parisa Hafezi. "Ahmadinejad sends letter to Bush" — , May 8, 2006
- MSNBC News Services, with contributions from the Associated Press and Reuters. "Iranian president writes letter to Bush" — , May 8, 2006
- Nasser Karimi. "Iran's Leader Writes to President Bush" — , May 8, 2006
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