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MP: Iran to respond U.S. congressmen letter
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09:00, December 08, 2008

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An Iranian lawmaker said here on Sunday that Iran would respond to the U.S. congressmen letter that suggesting to hold dialogue between the Iranian and American lawmakers, the official IRNA news agency reported.

Kazem Jalali, Rapporteur of Iran's parliament (Majlis) Commission on National Security and Foreign Policy said that Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani would reply to a letter forwarded by U.S. congressmen.

The letter signed by the U.S. lawmakers Gregory Meeks and Wayne Gilchrest, members of the U.S. parliamentary team for dialogue between the two parliaments, called for a "transparent dialogue between the representatives who are familiar with the national interests of both nations," according to the report.

Larijani said on Dec. 1 that Iran needs to know the topics of talks with the United States, the official IRNA news agency reported.

Larijani made the remarks after Iran had received several letters from the members of the U.S. Congress, and the last one saying that "We think it is the time to start the talks."

In the meantime, some U.S. nongovernmental groups have shown willingness for talks with Iran.

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Iran on April 7, 1980 after a group of Iranian students seized the U.S. embassy in Tehran and captured some 60 American diplomats in 1979,with 52 of them being in captivity for 444 days in the hostage crisis.

The tension escalated as the United States and its allies have been accusing Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, which Iran denies and insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.


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