Foreign Policy Blogs

Iran Postpones Meeting with the United States

The fourth round of talks between Iran and the United States concerning security issues in Iraq have been postponed, at the behest of Iran.

“It had originally been slated for December 18 with Iraqi authorities touting it as a 'technical meeting’ at experts level rather than a meeting of ambassadors.

However it was postponed, again at the request of Iran. Late January, Iranian officials said they had 'some concerns’ about the next round of discussions but did not elaborate.

The technical committee is made up of security and military experts as well as diplomats. It focuses on security rather than political issues.

Iran and the United States held three rounds of talks over Iraq last year amid mutual distrust.”

Sean McCormack, Spokesman for the State Department,  elaborated briefly during a press conference yesterday:

“At the moment, I don't think there's agreement on the date. The Iranians recently came back to us via the Iraqis, or came back to the Iraqis and saying that the tentative agreement on a date for getting together to talk about security issues in Iraq didn't work for them. Okay. I can't tell you the reasons behind that or what their, you know, why they decided to cancel the tentative meeting that was put together. You know, quite clearly, they thought their people had better things to do, I suppose.

We are prepared to continue to use this particular channel for a constructive exchange on issues related to Iraq and Iraq security. But you’ll have to ask the Iranian Government why it is that they decided not to participate in the meeting at this time.”