Ahmadinejad rejects information about secret talks with US
Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has casted back information about secret talks between Iran and the United States on the sidelines of UN General Assembly in New York, RIA Novosti reported according to the ISNA news agency.
Information about the secret talks to examine the establishment of covert communication between the two countries, leaked to the media on Thursday.
The talks were held in the UN headquarters, the Israeli Haaretz said, referring to an unnamed U.S. source. The talks were initiated by the United States, the paper added.
Officials from the entourage of Ahmadinejad, who arrived in New York this week, took part in the secret talks, Haaretz said.
"No, we have not met there. Of course, we had contacts with members of the U.S. public. Every year I meet with different U.S. groups," the agency quoted Ahmadinejad as saying.
Since Iran and the United States broke off diplomatic relations in 1979, the both countries have been maintaining contacts. "Over the last 30 years the countries have been exchanging communications, however there was nothing like dialogue during these days [at the UN General Assembly]," Ahmadinejad added.
The U.S. and other Western nations accuse Iran of attempting to build weapons under the guise of peaceful nuclear energy generation and demand Teheran halt its controversial uranium enrichment program.
Tehran has repeatedly rejected the demand, insisting it is pursuing a purely civilian program.
Several Western powers have called for harsher sanctions against Tehran if it does not agree to halt its nuclear program. The United States and Israel have not ruled out military action against Iran in case it continues its program.