As the United States mobilizes an international coalition to take on the Islamic State group, Iran has publicly said it will not work with a Western-organized effort. But the Shiite-majority state, which borders Iraqi territory where the terrorist group has spread, will still play a role in opposing the violent extremist Sunni organization.
Secretary of State John Kerry did not want Iran to participate in an international conference on fighting the Islamic State that was held in Paris on Monday, but he did not rule out further discussions with Tehran.
“We’re not coordinating with Iran, but as I said, we’re open to have a conversation at some point in time if there’s a way to find something constructive,” Kerry told reporters in Paris. “I’m never going to shut a door to something that could solve a problem if there’s a way to do it.”
Talks regarding Iran’s nuclear program will resume this fall, and Kerry said that conversations about the current terrorist threat in the Middle East have previously happened on the sidelines of nuclear negotiations. Some conversations are expected when world leaders gather at the United Nations General Assembly in New York next week.