Obama-rouhani Chat Covers Nuclear Talks, New York Traffic

Iran Ready for Result-Oriented Talks, Rohani Says

At the UN this week, he repeatedly said his government is ready for a deal. Skeptical Reaction Some U.S. lawmakers say they remain skeptical of Rouhanis overtures. Representative Eliot Engel of New York, the top Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said after Rouhanis address to the UN General Assembly that the Iranian leaders rhetoric does not reflect any significant change in Irans calculus or behavior. We must continue to make clear that all options remain on the table to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapons capability, Engel said in a Sept. 24 statement. Diplomats and analysts have cautioned that the real test of Rouhanis commitment to an accord will start when detailed negotiations resume in Geneva on Oct. 15. One meeting and a change in tone, which was welcome, doesnt answer those questions yet about Irans nuclear intentions, Kerry said on Sept. 26. Big Interest In his UN address this past week, Rouhani said Iran maintains its inherent right to enrich uranium. The Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency circulated a document yesterday in which Iran stuck to its positions, including barring inspectors from visiting the Parchin military base to investigate whether tests were conducted there related to triggering a nuclear device. Rouhani has a big interest in moving quickly to show that he can get sanctions relief, but whether he can deliver the rollback in their program that we will need for that remains to be seen, said Dennis Ross, Obamas former adviser on Iran and now a counselor at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Irans Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei controls the countrys nuclear program. Rouhani told reporters in New York earlier yesterday that he has the support of all forces in Iran for the next phase of nuclear talks, and that the country will present a proposal in Geneva. Rouhani won support from voters in Irans June election by promising to improve an economy wrecked by the sanctions.

My New York Days

Now I finally get to see it. Heathrow airport was surprisingly stress-free on a Monday evening; I celebrated with some new perfume, a pair of jewelled flip-flops, and a glass of champagne. Ah, the joys of travelling alone. After the in-flight meal and some writing, Im flicking through the movies to kill time. I end up watching Frances Ha. Its a recent indie flick, shot in black and white, following the fortunes of Greta, an aspiring dancer, and Sophie, a rising editor, as they leave college and face the real world. They fall in and out of love, and struggle with that eternal New York question of how to afford the rent on an apartment. Its an engaging depiction of Generation-Y life and relationships in the Big Apple, and it has me reeling in bittersweet memories… I was 17 years old, on my year out before starting at Oxford University. It was the end of 1995, Bill Clinton was in the White House and Mayor Giuliani ruled New York City. My plan was to spend a few weeks in NYC visiting my big sister Katie, before travelling around Europe. Do you remember the blizzards of winter 95-96?