Wary Reaction in Iran to News of Talks with U.S.

Iran's decision to talk to U.S. officials about security in Iraq has prompted both criticism and cautious optimism among many Iranian leaders and newspapers.

The talks are set to take place in Baghdad in the next few weeks and will be one of the few, official face-to-face meetings between the two governments in many years.

On a recent visit to the United Arab Emirates, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran had agreed to a request from Washington for the talks in order to help the Iraqi people and government.

Iran and the United States are the two countries with the most influence over Iraq's future.

Iran's decision to talk to U.S. officials about security in Iraq has prompted both criticism and cautious optimism among many Iranian leaders and newspapers.

The talks are set to take place in Baghdad in the next few weeks and will be one of the few, official face-to-face meetings between the two governments in many years.

On a recent visit to the United Arab Emirates, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran had agreed to a request from Washington for the talks in order to help the Iraqi people and government.

Iran and the United States are the two countries with the most influence over Iraq's future.

There is support within Iran's parliament for the decision to hold talks, although some lawmakers caution that Iran must be wary of what they call U.S. "tricks."

Others say the negotiations could resolve bilateral Iran-U.S. issues, even though the United States has said it plans to focus solely on the subject of Iraq.

A reformist newspaper says the move is in the interests of both governments.

One hardline newspaper said the U.S. has finally been forced to recognize Tehran as a major player in the region. Another strongly criticized Iran's decision, saying that negotiating with the U.S. means quote "shaking hands with Satan and dancing with wolves."

Many here believe that Iran and the U.S. have deep differences and that U.S. hostility toward Iran has intensified in recent years.

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