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Tehran's Ambassador to Iraq to Lead Talks with US


Iran's ambassador to Iraq will lead his country's delegation in talks with the United States next week.

A Foreign Ministry spokesman, Mohammad Ali Hosseini, Friday told state-run media that Ambassador Hassan Kazemi has been appointed to head Tehran's team.

U.S. and Iranian officials will meet in Baghdad on Monday for face-to-face talks about security in Iraq. Both sides have said discussions will focus only on Iraq.

Last week, a U.S. State Department spokesman, Sean McCormack, said the U.S. will press Iran for action to help stabilize its Iraqi neighbor.

Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki has said the main problem in Iraq is the presence of U.S.-led foreign troops.

The United States has accused Iran of aiding and training extremist groups in Iraq, a charge Tehran denies.

Iran and the U.S. have not had formal relations since shortly after Iran's Islamic Revolution in 1979.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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