White House spokesman Jay Carney says negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program have had “a level of seriousness and substance that we had not seen before,” however “no one should expect a breakthrough overnight.”

Carney’s comments are echoed by an anonymous U.S. official quoted by Reuters:

“I’ve been doing this now for about two years,” the official said on condition of anonymity. “And I have never had such intense, detailed, straightforward, candid conversations with the Iranian delegation before.

The newfound warmth in diplomatic relations between Iran and the United States follows the election of Hasan Rowhani. The new Iranian president, who is said to have the backing of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, has to walk a difficult line. Crippling sanctions have provided a sense of urgency, but if Rowhani gives away too much, too quickly, he could run into difficulty with hard-liners at home.

— Posted by Peter Z. Scheer

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