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Washington denies secret plan for direct talks with Iran

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Obama administration responds to report that both sides have agreed in principle to one-on-one discussions after election

The Obama administration has moved quickly to water down a report that the US and Iran have agreed in principle to meet one-on-one for negotiations on Iran’s nuclear programme.

The New York Times said secret talks between officials that began early in Barack Obama’s term as president had delivered the provisional agreement. Iran had insisted the talks wait until after the November presidential election, the New York Times said, attributing the information to a senior official in the Obama administration.

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However the National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said in response that the United States would continue to work with fellow permanent members of the UN security council and Germany.

“It’s not true that the United States and Iran have agreed to one-on-one talks or any meeting after the American elections,” the statement said.

“We continue to work with the P5+1 [five permanent members of the UN security council plus Germany] on a diplomatic solution and have said from the outset that we would be prepared to meet bilaterally.”

Vietor said on Saturday that Obama had made clear that he would do whatever was necessary to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. Vietor said Iran must meet its obligations or it would “continue to face crippling sanctions and increased pressure”.

Obama and the Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, will meet on Monday night in a debate focusing on foreign policy. Iran’s nuclear ambitions will likely be a topic.

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Obama has said he will prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. He hopes sanctions alongside negotiations can get Iran to halt uranium enrichment, but the strategy has not worked yet.

Obama has held out the threat of military action as a last resort but Romney has accused Obama of being weak on Iran, saying the US needs to step up the military threat.

© Guardian News and Media 2012

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Team Trump wants to steal another election — and there’s only one way to beat them back

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When I was growing up at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, back in the early 1960s, my mother drove down to Kansas City one morning to go shopping and have lunch with an old friend of her mother’s. Ladies going out shopping and having lunch in the upscale Country Club Plaza in Kansas City was almost a formal occasion. I remember she put on a summery suit and heels and stockings, and I’m pretty sure she wore a pair of white cotton gloves.

When she returned a few hours later, she wasn’t carrying any bags from the shops, and she was seething. The woman she’d eaten lunch with was married to a man who owned a chain of downtown hotels in major cities around the country. They lived in a big Tudor house in Mission Hills, the Beverly Hills of the Midwest. She drove a Cadillac. She was rich.

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#LetLevSpeak: Giuliani henchman’s attorney explains why his client wants to testify against Devin Nunes

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An attorney for indicted Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas warned Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., that “Lev remembers” their phone calls — even if the Intelligence Committee’s top Republican does not.Phone records obtained from AT&T and released in the Intelligence Committee’s impeachment report revealed four phone calls between Nunes and Parnas on April 12, amid the smear campaign that ousted then-Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, including one which lasted longer than eight minutes. Parnas, who played a key role in Giuliani’s hunt for damaging information on former Vice President Joe Biden, was later indicted on campaign finance charges. Prosecutors have said he is still under investigation for more crimes.However, Nunes now claims that he cannot not recall speaking with Parnas.
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Why are cops around the world using this outlandish mind-reading tool?

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The police gave Ricky Joyner a pen and a nine-page questionnaire.

Write what you did, beginning to end, on the day Sandra Hernandez disappeared, one question asked.

“Went ot work …,” Joyner wrote, transposing the letters in “to.” “Went home toke shower got dress pick Sandra up … went out to eat … went the movies … toke Sandra home … stop at [bar] for little while, then spent the night with a grilfriend.”

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