U.S. plans ‘direct diplomacy’ with Iran

NEW YORK (JTA) – The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations said the new administration would engage in "direct diplomacy" with Iran.

Susan Rice, who was appointed to the U.N. post by President Obama, made the comment Monday after presenting her credentials to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

"We look forward to engaging in vigorous diplomacy that includes direct diplomacy with Iran," said Rice, according to The Associated Press.

Rice also said that diplomacy "must go hand in hand with a very firm message from the United States and the international community that Iran needs to meet its obligations as defined by the Security Council."

She added that the United States would look for ways that are "necessary and appropriate" to ratchet up the pressure on Iran, with a goal of ending its nuclear program.

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