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Clinton Says U.S. Committed to Diplomacy With Iran

Dec. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the U.S. is committed to a diplomatic solution to convince Iran to abandon its nuclear arms program.

“We remain committed to pursuing every diplomatic avenue available” in order “to persuade Iran to forgo a nuclear weapons program,” Clinton said today in Wakefield, Quebec, after a meeting with her counterparts from Canada and Mexico.

She spoke after Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki was forced out of Iran’s cabinet by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who named the country’s atomic energy chief to replace him.

The U.S. relationship with Iran “is not toward any individual,” Clinton said. “It is toward the country, the government, which is complex and challenging to deal with.”

Last week’s talks in Geneva among Iran, the U.S., China, France, Germany, Russia and the U.K. represented “a good start,” Clinton said. “It wasn’t more than that, but it was a good start.”

Iran agreed to more talks about its nuclear program, in a meeting set for January in Istanbul.

To contact the reporter on this story: Indira Lakshmanan in Wakefield, Quebec, at ilakshmanan@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Silva at msilva34@bloomberg.net.

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