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Negroponte Sees Reasons to Talk With Iran

Interview airs in VOA's Urdu-language program 'Beyond the Headlines'

Washington, D.C., July 6, 2007 - In an exclusive television interview today with the Voice of America, Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte said, "There are reasons to talk to the Iranian government with respect to security in Iraq," and he recalled that the United States has already had discussions with the Iranian representative in Baghdad at the ambassadorial level.

Negroponte, who is the State Department's second-ranking official, added, however, that "(the United States) believe(s) that Iran is not playing a constructive role currently." He said, "We believe that there are things that (the Iranians) can do to help ameliorate the security situation in Iraq, and if another round of talks takes place these are the issues we need to talk about."

Today's interview with VOA's Urdu-language Beyond the Headlines will be a special feed to Pakistan's popular GEO TV for use in that network's news programming.

The half-hour Beyond the Headlines covers topics of interest to young Pakistanis. Monday through Friday the program focuses on international developments, technology, politics, social issues, education, religion, sports, and entertainment. GEO TV is the largest private television network in Pakistan and has been VOA's affiliate since 2005.

The Voice of America, which first went on the air in 1942, is a multimedia international broadcasting service funded by the U.S. government through the Broadcasting Board of Governors. VOA broadcasts more than 1,000 hours of news, information, educational, and cultural programming every week to an estimated worldwide audience of more than 115 million people. Programs are produced in 45 languages.

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