WASHINGTON - The White House on Wednesday said Iran's role in efforts to stabilize Syria has not been productive and the United States was interested in working with nations that would be more constructive.

UN envoy Kofi Annan has said Iran should play a role in peace talks on Syria. White House spokesman Jay Carney said while he was not ruling anything out, "Iran's role has not been productive or helpful. Our interest is in working with nations who want to see stability in Syria."

Carney said there had been a number of high-level Syrian defections recently, including from Syrian President Bashar Assad's inner circle. But he said he could not confirm the latest reports of the defection of Syria's ambassador to Iraq.

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