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Iranians host dinner seeking to avert UN sanctions

Iran's foreign minister invited the United States and other members of the UN Security Council to dinner Thursday night, his nation's latest high-profile attempt to avert more economic sanctions over its nuclear program.
Western diplomats called it a rare move for a visiting dignitary such as Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki to host a dinner for all the council's 15 member nations, each of which was expected to send a representative.
In most if not all cases, diplomats said, nations were sending a senior official, not the top-ranking ambassador, to the dinner.
But the occasion still serves as one of the highest-ranking contacts in recent years between the US and Iran, which lack formal relations. Alejandro Wolff, the US deputy ambassador to the UN, was to attend.
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