Iran rules out mediation, insisting on Iraqi pullout

Iran categorically rejected any form of Islamic or Arab mediation to end the war with Iraq, saying the conflict will be settled only when Iraqi troops retreat from occupied Iranian lands. Iran's blanket rejection of mediation proposals was expressed by a member of parliament, Hojatolislam Gulam Hussein Haqqani, in an interview with a Saudi newspaper. Hojatolislam Haqqani is in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, as the head of a delegation sent by Prime Minister Muhammad Ali Rajai to explain Tehran's position to the influential Saudi leadership.

The Iranian stand did not bode well for UN peace envoy Olof Palme, who went to Baghdad in his third effort to settle the 150-day-old Gulf conflict.

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