ROME (AFP) – Iran expects a “different approach” from the next US president, whoever wins the November elections, President Mahmoud Ahmadenijad said in an interview published in Italy Wednesday.
“Whoever wins the elections, I’m sure that the United States will change, it will have a different approach,” the Iranian leader told the Italian daily La Repubblica.
“The United States will have a reduced sphere of influence in the world,” he predicted, adding: “The new president will have to respond to the real demands of the American people: 40 million American citizens do not have health insurance, the victims of the New Orleans hurricane still have no homes.”
In addition, the United States “will have to withdraw the soldiers from Iraq (since) the American people will not tolerate continued spending of billions of dollars on weapons,” said Ahmadenijad, in Rome to attend the UN food agency’s summit on food security.
Asked whether he would negotiate with the new US leadership come January 2009, Ahmadenijad said: “It is they who cut off the links with us, hoping to suffocate us. Today Iran is an advanced country. We are ready for dialogue with anyone, except with the Zionist regime, in relations based on mutual respect and fairness.”