JERUSALEM (JTA) — Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said he is ready to talk to the United States.
The Iranian president on Tuesday said Tehran was ready for "talks based on mutual respect and in a fair atmosphere," The New York Times reported.
Ahmadinejad made the remarks during a televised address to a rally celebrating the 30th anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution. They came several hours after President Obama, in his first White House prime time news conference, said his administration was looking for diplomatic openings in which to engage Iran in the coming months.
"The new U.S. administration has announced that they want to produce change and pursue the course of dialogue," Ahmadinejad told rally participants. "It is quite clear that real change must be fundamental and not tactical. It is clear the Iranian nation welcomes real changes."
Ahmadinejad also attacked Obama’s predecessor, President Bush, saying the "world does not want to see the dark age of Bush repeated."