The Tehran Times indicated significant interest on the part of the Iranian government to a proposal by Turkey to serve as a mediator in the conflict between the United States and Iran. In a recent interview, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan said the election of Barack Obama opened new opportunities for dialogue between America and the Iranian government and he would be happy to serve as a conduit for such discussions. Obama said during his campaign he was willing to engage in talks with Iran and Erdogan thought the note of congratulations sent by President Ahmadinejad to Obama was a positive step forward. “We watch the relations between Iran and U.S. with great concern,” said Erdogan. “We expect such issues to be resolved at the table. Wars are never solutions in this age.”
Turkey argues it is uniquely situated to be a mediator since it is a Muslim nation with good relations with Iran and is also a member of NATO. Erdogan currently is working as a mediator in an effort to revolve issues between Israel and Syria. Erdogan has high hopes Obama will assume a positive attitude to pursue peace with Iran.