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US says Iran's pick for UN envoy is 'not viable'

TEHRAN - The United States notified Iran's government on Tuesday that Tehran's pick for a new UN envoy is "not viable," a day after the US Senate voted against letting the diplomat enter the country.

 

American officials objected to the selection of Hamid Abutalebi because of his alleged participation in a Muslim student group that held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days in the 1979 seizure of the US Embassy in Tehran. The Obama administration has stopped short of saying it would refuse him a visa.

 

"The US government has informed the government of Iran that this potential selection is not viable," White House spokesman Jay Carney said in Washington. (AP)