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Iran To Attend Baghdad Security Talks

Manuchehr Mottaki (file photo) (epa) March 7, 2007 -- Iran has confirmed it will attend a conference in Baghdad this week on Iraq's security -- an event where U.S. officials also will be present.

The announcement today by Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki is Tehran's first unequivocal commitment to the March 10 event.

Mottaki said the Iranian delegation would be led by Abbas Araqchi, the deputy foreign minister for legal and international affairs.

Mottaki said Iran's participation is aimed at helping the Iraqi government and people.

Also expected to attend the Baghdad conference are representatives from other permanent UN Security Council member states and Iraq's neighbors.

Washington and Tehran have not had formal diplomatic relations since Iran's 1979 revoluition. In recent months, Washington has accused Tehran of backing militants in Iraq -- a charge that Iran denies.

(AP, Reuters, AFP)

Iraq And Iran

Iraq And Iran

Iranian Shi'a protesting the Golden Mosque Bombing in Iraq on February 24

WHAT IS GOING ON? On March 8, RFE/RL's Washington office hosted a roundtable discussion on relations between Iraq and Iran. Although most analysts agree that Iran has been actively involved in Iraq since the U.S.-led military operation to oust former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, they continue to debate the nature, extent, and intent of that involvement.
The RFE/RL briefing featured WAYNE WHITE, former deputy director of the U.S. State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research's Office of Analysis for the Near East and South Asia, and A. WILLIAM SAMII, RFE/RL's regional analyst for Iran and editor of the "RFE/RL Iran Report."


Listen to the complete RFE/RL briefing (about 75 minutes):
Real Audio Windows Media


Iran/Iraq: Bilateral Ties Improving Despite U.S. Worries

Renewed Speculation About Tehran And Instability In Iraq

Iran/Iraq: Neighbors Mending Ties, But Outstanding Issues Remain


RFE/RL's coverage of Iran. RFE/RL's coverage of Iraq.