Despite 9/11 rant, Ahmadinejad hopes nuclear programme talks will restart by October

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Tehran, Sept 25 (ANI): Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has reportedly dismissed criticisms over his speech at the United Nations, in which he asserted that most people believed the United States orchestrated the September 11 terror attacks, and expressed hope that talks on Iran's nuclear programme would resume soon.

According to The New York Times, Ahmadinejad expressed the hope that negotiations could resume as early as next month over a deal that would involve a swap of enriched uranium. The talks could restart a diplomatic process that collapsed last year and led to a fourth round of sanctions against Iran in June.

"We hope that by October they will be resumed," Ahmadinejad added.

In his address on Thursday, which focused on what he portrayed as the collapse of the capitalist world order, Ahmadinejad cited conspiracy theories speculating that the United States had set up the Sept. 11 attacks to revive its economy and assert its influence over the Middle East.

His speech prompted diplomats from the U.S. and several European countries at the 65th UN General Assembly to stage a walk out.

President Obama called Ahmadinejad's comments "hateful" and "offensive" while the British deputy prime minister, Nick Clegg, said they were "bizarre, offensive and attention-grabbing pronouncements" aimed at deflecting the dialogue away from concerns about Iran's nuclear program.

"His remarks were intended to distract attention from Iran's obligations and to generate media headlines," the paper quoted Clegg, as saying.

Ahmadinejad, however, seemed surprised by the response to his speech and added: "Did I say anything wrong? What does this have to do with the nuclear issue? It has no connection to it." (ANI)

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