Iran denies US direct contact over murder plot

Updated: 2011-10-15 08:23


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TEHRAN - The Iranian authorities denied that the United States had "direct contact" with Iran over the alleged involvement of the Iranian government in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported Friday.

The press officer of Iran's Representative Office to the United Nations, Alireza Miryousofi, told Mehr on Friday that "No direct talks have been held between the two countries" over the alleged plot.

US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said at a regular news briefing Thursday "We have had direct contact with Iran on this issue."

On Tuesday, the US Justice Department alleged that two men, Manssor Arbabsayar, a 56-year-old US citizen holding both the Iranian and US passports, and Gholam Shakuri, an Iranian citizen, were charged with sponsoring and promoting terrorist activities abroad, including a plot to kill Saudi Ambassador to Washington Adel Al-Jubeir.

Iranian officials have dismissed the US claim as "baseless."