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Ali Akbar Velayati
Advisor to Iran supreme leader urges direct nuclear talks with U.S.
Advisor to Iran supreme leader urges direct nuclear talks with U.S.

TEHRAN -- The chief foreign policy advisor to Iran's Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has called for direct talks with the United States on nuclear issues, a possible sign from the supreme leader that he is amenable to ending the animosity that has defined relations with Washington for 34 years. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has been the target of fierce criticism by political and religious hard-liners since he helped broker a deal with the United States and five other Western powers last month that will put Iranian high-level enrichment of uranium on hold for at least six months. Conservatives in Khamenei's clerical hierarchy and the Revolutionary Guard Corps have lambasted the...

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