| GEO World|
| Iran will not agree to talks on nuke program: Hillary|
| Updated at: 0410 PST, Tuesday, March 03, 2009|
CAIRO: Even as the Obama administration pledges to engage Iran over its nuclear program, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is telling key Arab leaders that she’s “doubtful” Tehran will actually respond.
Clinton met Monday with her counterpart from the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, on the sidelines of an international aid conference for the Palestinian territories.
According to a senior U.S. official, Sheikh Abdullah raised his concerns with Clinton that the U.S. could reach some agreement with Iran on key strategic issues without Washington consulting its Arab allies.
Clinton, however, assured the Emirati royal that this wouldn’t be the case.
“Our eyes are wide open” when it comes to Iran, Clinton told Sheikh Abdullah, the U.S. official said. She added that the U.S. “was doubtful Iran would respond” to calls for an international dialogue, despite repeated overtures from President Barack Obama and other senior U.S. officials.
Clinton told Sheikh Abdullah that Washington’s willingness to engage Iran seemed to be unnerving Tehran’s leadership. The U.S. official quoted Clinton as saying: “The worst nightmare for Iran is for the international community to be unified and the U.S. willing to engage.”