- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton urged Iran Tuesday to show willingness to “engage meaningfully” with the United States and other countries, but she did not put any conditions for future U.S. talks with Tehran.

“There is a clear opportunity for the Iranians[…] to demonstrate some willingness to engage meaningfully with the international community,” Mrs. Clinton said in her first briefing to reporters at the State Department.

Her predecessor, Condoleezza Rice, offered to talk to Iran in 2006, but only if Tehran stopped enriching uranium, which Washington suspects is meant to be used for a nuclear weapon. That never happened.

President Obama said repeatedly during his election campaign that his administration would talk to Iran without preconditions. In a television interview Monday, he said the United States was prepared to extend its hand to Iran if it “unclenched its fist.”

“Whether or not that hand becomes less clenched is really up to them,” Mrs. Clinton said Tuesday.


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