Iran 'still awaiting' U.S. attitude change

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday that Iran is still waiting for a true change of attitude by the United States.

Speaking in Isfahan, Ahmadinejad warned that Iran would distinguish between genuine and hollow gestures. According to the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), the government's official news outlet, Ahmadinejad "said that if the nation sensed that the hand extended to it just pretended to be friendly but lacked honesty in essence, then it would react to it the way it did to offers made by former US president George W Bush."

Ahmadinejad argued that Obama's statements on the Iranian nuclear program do not represent a change from past U.S. policy and claimed that Iran desires nuclear technology for solely peaceful purposes.

"[T]he Iranian nation has never sought nuclear weapons," Ahmadinejad said, "because it believes that those who stockpile nuclear bombs and work hard to keep them for themselves are mentally handicapped in the game of politics since they have failed to realize that the era of bombs, military actions and threats is long over."

Ahmadinejad's statements come on the same day that the Obama administration agreed to participate in group talks with Iran regarding the nation's nuclear program