Iran denies meeting with U.S. representative in The Hague

April 4, 2009 - 0:0

TEHRAN – Tehran on Wednesday dismissed a statement by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that Iran’s representative held “brief” talks with the U.S. representative on the sidelines of the international conference on Afghanistan in The Hague on Tuesday.

Clinton said Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, had a ""brief but cordial"" meeting with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Mahdi Akhondzadeh.
“There was no official or unofficial meeting or conversation between the representatives of the Islamic Republic of Iran and America on the sidelines of the conference,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hassan Qashqavi told the Mehr News Agency.
Clinton also told reporters that Holbrooke and Akhondzadeh ""agreed to keep in touch"".
She also claimed the U.S. delegation delivered an unsigned diplomatic letter to Akhondzadeh asking Tehran to do what it could to bring about the return of three Americans from Iran.
However, Qashqavi said this report is also untrue.
“Since there was no meeting or dialogue between the representatives of the two countries normally no letter was passed to Iran by the American side.”
Akhondzadeh also denied that any negotiations with U.S. officials had taken place. ""It is neither on our agenda nor have we any plans to negotiate with the Americans,"" he was quoted by the official Islamic Republic News Agency as saying.