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US reacts to Iranian president's visit to India

April 22, 2008 09:19 IST
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The United States hopes that the Indian government or any government that is engaging with the Iranians, including with their President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, would call on him to meet the requirements that the Security Council and the international community has placed on him in terms of suspending their uranium enrichment activities and complying with the other requirements regarding their nuclear programme.

State Department's Deputy Spokesman Tom Casey made this observation on Monday when asked whether the US has any concerns about Ahmadinejad proposed visit to New Delhi and whether there had been any message sent to India about the proposed meetings.

Casey said it's up to every country to determine for itself how it's going to organise its bilateral relations.

"Many countries, including some of our strong allies in Europe, have diplomatic relations with Iran. And it's up to them to determine how best to manage them," he added.

He, however, said, the US would also certainly encourage them to ask Iran to end its rather unhelpful activities with respect to Iraq, with respect to support for terrorism, including organisations like Hezbollah and Hamas, and to otherwise become a more responsible actor on the world stage.

According to reports, Iranian President Ahmadinejad is expected to make a brief visit to India before the end of the month. This will be the first trip to the South Asian nation by an Iranian head of state in five years.

The two countries are expected to discuss a variety of issues of mutual concerns, including a proposed Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline.

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