Iran Ready for Direct Talks With U.S., Ahmadinejad Tells State TV

Iran 's president tells state television he would welcome direct bilateral talks with the United States under certain conditions.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says he would hold talks with Washington but only if the two parties are treated as being on "equal footing." He did not elaborate.

The Iranian leader told state TV late Monday that such talks are possible "in the near future." He did not say whether any definite plans were under way.

Ahmadinejad also tells state TV he will not accept any conditions on his country's disputed nuclear program during talks with European Union officials this weekend.

Major world powers have offered Iran a package of incentives in exchange for a halt to uranium enrichment — a process that can be used to generate electricity, or make a nuclear weapon.

Ahmadinejad told state television Monday he rejects that condition. He says Saturday's talks will focus on "common" points instead.

Iran 's top nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, and EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana are scheduled to meet in Geneva on July 19.