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Brief, Cordial' Meeting Between Iran, US


U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says top U.S. and Iranian diplomats held a short, unplanned meeting in The Hague on the sidelines of an international conference on Afghanistan.

Clinton said Tuesday that Washington's top Afghan envoy, Richard Holbrooke, had "a brief and cordial exchange with the head of the Iranian delegation," Deputy Foreign Minister Mohammad Mehdi Akhundzadeh.

She said they did not discuss "anything substantive," but did agree to stay in touch.

High-level contacts between the two nations are extremely rare. Iran and the United States have not had diplomatic relations for about 30 years.

Holbrooke is the U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan. He spoke to the Iranian diplomat while attending a United Nations-sponsored conference on Afghan security and reconstruction.

Akhundzadeh earlier told the conference that Iran is ready to help fight drug traffickers and play a role in rebuilding Afghanistan.

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