Iran responded Tuesday to a set of incentives from Europe and the United States aimed at ending its nuclear program, but did not agree to suspend the enrichment of uranium by the end of the month, the West’s primary demand.
In its response, Iran offered “serious talks” over its nuclear activities but did not raise the issue of suspending enrichment by Aug. 31, the deadline established by the United Nations Security Council, Western diplomats said.
It is a policy of the U.S. government to have no direct communication with Iran. Between the two nations, there are no formal diplomatic ties.
But what if a U.S. senator and an Iranian foreign minister happened to be staying in the same hotel -- on the same floor, no less -- and bumped into each other in the hallway?
A hypothetical question, it's not.
Here in Pretoria, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Motakki are staying in the same hotel. Their groups have crossed paths in the lobby of the Sheraton Hotel, but the two officials have not. Yet.