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Last Updated: Wednesday, 29 November 2006, 19:17 GMT
Iran leader appeals to US people
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's said the US people sought justice and truth
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has made an unprecedented and direct appeal to the US people, urging them to reject US foreign policy.

In a letter to "Noble Americans" Iran's president said the US administration's use of "coercion, force and injustice" weakened its global position.

Mr Ahmadinejad said terrorism had "grown exponentially" in the "military misadventure" of Iraq.

He also accused the US administration of ignoring public opinion.

Can terrorism be contained and eradicated through war, destruction and the killing of hundreds of thousands of innocents? If that were possible, then why has the problem not been resolved?
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Iranian president

Mr Ahmadinejad said he hoped that US President George W Bush would recognise the anger over the war in Iraq expressed in the mid-term election losses.

"I hope that in the wake of the mid-term elections, the administration of President Bush will have heard and will heed the message of the American people," Mr Ahmadinejad said in the open letter.

He described Iraq as a "military misadventure" costing the lives of Iraqi civilians and American soldiers alike.

The Iranian leader, who wrote an 18-page letter to the US president in May to which Mr Bush never replied, said he sought to start a dialogue with the American people.

That letter was the first official communication between the two countries' presidents since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution.

'Truth and justice'

In his latest letter, Mr Ahmadinejad took a conciliatory tone as he sought to bypass the US government and speak directly to its citizens.

He wrote that the people of both states "were God-fearing, truth-loving and justice-seeking".

Mr Ahmadinejad's letter, which makes no mention of Iran's nuclear programme, comes during a period of especially tense relations between the two countries.

Iran has refused to suspend its nuclear enrichment programme and the US is leading efforts to impose UN sanctions on the country.

The Iranian leader's discursive, five-page letter also urged Washington to recognise a Palestinian state, saying it was ignoring public opinion in "trampling the rights of the Palestinian people".

Mr Ahmadinejad, who has called for Israel to be wiped off the map, urged the US people to support the right of the Palestinians to live in their own homeland.

The Iranian president also warned the Democratic Party that, after gaining control of Congress, they would be "held to account by the people and by history."

Only a shift in policy could mend damaged relations and with other states and a bruised global image, he said.

"If the US government meets the current domestic and external challenges with an approach based on truth and justice, it can remedy some of the past afflictions and alleviate some of the global resentment and hatred of America," he said.

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