Washington: Iran should be dealing "constructively" with the UN nuclear watchdog and leading world powers regarding its controversial nuclear program, a State Department spokesman has said.
"At this stage, the primary focus should be on Iran engaging constructively the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) and the P5+1," Philip Crowley said yesterday when asked about Turkey`s mediating efforts in the matter.
The P5+1 refers to the six major powers negotiating with Iran: the United States, China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany.
Crowley said that was the message US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton conveyed to her Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu in a telephone conversation earlier this week.
The spokesman said he believed the two top diplomats had "a mutual understanding" on who Iran should engage at this point, but stressed that Ankara and Tehran, as neighbours, were "within their rights" to continue their diplomatic contacts.
Davutoglu on Tuesday said nuclear talks with Iran could not take place without Turkey, when a reporter asked if it was true Hillary had told him to keep out of the issue.
Turkey, Brazil and Iran in May signed a nuclear fuel swap deal that was largely ignored by the international community and did not stop the UN Security Council from slapping new sanctions on Tehran on June 09.