US Engages Iran on Iraqi Security

Ambassadors to meet in Baghdad; nuclear program won't be on the table
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted May 14, 2007 7:33 AM CDT
U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker speaks during a press availability with Vice President Dick Cheney and Gen. David Petraeus, commander of the U.S. forces in Iraq, both not pictured, in Baghdad, Iraq...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The US will sit down with Iran to enlist its aid in quelling violence in Iraq as early as next week, reports the Washington Post. US ambassador Ryan Crocker will meet with his Iranian counterparts in Baghdad to encourage the country, frequently accused of sponsoring sectarian violence in neighboring Iraq, to take on a "productive role."

White House officials emphasized that talks would pertain only to Iraq, and not to Iran's nuclear program. The meeting, which would have seemed impossible only a few months ago, shows the Bush team continuing to loosen its embargo on negotiating with "Axis of Evil" nations as Congress pushes for results in Iraq.