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Last Updated: Friday, 12 August 2005, 00:19 GMT 01:19 UK
Iran leader to be granted US visa
By Jonathan Beale
BBC News, Washington


Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. File photo
Ahmadinejad's alleged involvement in the embassy takeover is unclear
President George Bush has said Iran's new President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will be allowed into the US to attend a UN meeting in New York next month.

There was speculation Mr Ahmadinejad may be refused a visa because of claims he was involved in the 1979 takeover of the US embassy in Iran.

US officials are still investigating Mr Ahmadinejad's alleged involvement.

But Mr Bush said the US had separate obligations to other nations and the UN to allow Iran's president to attend.

Nuclear concerns

President Bush made his remarks following an informal meeting with his foreign policy team at his ranch in Crawford, Texas.

The president told reporters US investigators had still not determined whether Mr Ahmadinejad was involved in the US embassy takeover.

Turning to Iran's decision to resume work on its nuclear fuel cycle, Mr Bush said it was now clear the rest of the world had condemned that decision.

He said the UN nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, had taken a positive first step by expressing its concern.

Much of the president's time with his most senior staff, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld, was spent discussing the situation in neighbouring Iraq.

Mr Bush repeated his hope that Iraq would agree on a new constitution by next week and that it would include guarantees for women's rights.


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