FILE – This June 12, 2014 file photo shows Secretary of State John Kerry listens during a meeting between President Barack Obama and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington. With Baghdad threatened by the advance of an al-Qaida-inspired insurgency, the State Department is reinforcing security at the U.S. Embassy in Iraq’s capital _ and sending some personnel out of town. Kerry made calls to foreign ministers in Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Qatar to discuss the threat and the need for Iraqi leaders to work together. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)
WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry says the Obama administration is willing to talk with Iran over deteriorating security conditions in Iraq and is not ruling out potential U.S.-Iranian military cooperation in stemming the advance of Sunni extremists. Kerry also says U.S. drone strikes “may well” be an option.
In a Monday interview with Yahoo! News, Kerry said Washington is “open to discussions” with Tehran if the Iranians can help end the violence and restore confidence in the Iraqi government. Asked about possible military cooperation with Iran, Kerry said he would “not rule out anything that would be constructive.” However, he stressed that any contacts with Iran would move “step-by-step.”
U.S. officials said earlier there is a possibility that a senior American diplomat may discuss Iraq with an Iranian delegation at nuclear talks in Vienna.