White House: No deal on Iran nuclear talks

The White House is denying a report in The New York Times on Saturday that said administration officials and Iran have agreed to one-on-one talks on Tehran’s nuclear program.

National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said late Saturday that the White House remains open to discussions in an effort to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. “We continue to work … on a diplomatic solution and have said from the outset that we would be prepared to meet bilaterally,” Vietor said in a statement.

“It has always been our goal for sanctions to pressure Iran to come in line with its obligations. The onus is on the Iranians to do so, otherwise they will continue to face crippling sanctions and increased pressure,” he said.

The newspaper said in its report that the talks would set the stage for what could be a last-ditch diplomatic effort to avert a military strike on Iran.

The report comes two days before the third presidential debate. Obama and GOP challenger Mitt Romney will discuss foreign policy on Monday night in Boca Raton, Fla.