Iran to spare no effort to help Iraq stave off ISIS

Al-Hayat newspaper quotes Iranian sources as saying they would consider talks with US over Islamic State threat.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
September 6, 2014 14:16
1 minute read.
Ali Khamenei

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks in Tehran. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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After reports surfaced on Friday that Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei approved cooperation with the United States in fighting Islamic State jihadists in the region, both Tehran and Washington were quick to deny the allegations.

Marie Harf, deputy spokeswoman for the State Department, said the US was not going to cooperate militarily "or share intelligence" with Iran, nor did it have future "plans to do so."

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While Washington was "open to engaging them, as we have in the past, most notably on Afghanistan," the spokeswoman added,  there would be no coordination between the two nations.

The BBC reported that Tehran OKed cooperation with the US in the global effort against the Islamic State.

Meanwhile, on the Iranian side, the foreign ministry rejected the report, coming out with an official statement denying any such claims.

On Saturday, Iranian sources did not comment on the allegations that their supreme leader allowed contact with the Americans over Islamic State, but did tell the pan-Arab Al-Hayat newspaper that Tehran would spare no effort if it was in the "best interest of Iraq," even, if that meant "dialogue with the Americans, as happened in 2007."

They added that any "contact between the two sides" would only transpire after consultation with the Iraqi government and military; and if they participated in the joint effort.

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