The United States says Iran's incoming president was a leader in the movement that organized the 1979 seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran.
A White House spokesman, Scott McClellan, says officials are still investigating whether President-elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was one of those who took Americans hostage in the attack.
Several former hostages identified Mr. Ahmadinejad as one of their captors shortly after he won Iran's presidential runoff election last month.
Associates of the president-elect have acknowledged he belonged to the student group that planned the embassy takeover. But the man who led the attack, Abbas Abdi, has said the incoming president played no role in the seizure or the hostage-taking.
The militants who seized the embassy held 52 Americans hostage for a year before releasing them in January 1981.
Some information for this report provided by AP.