AP Interview: Rice says Iran scaling back in Iraq

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice says Iran has chosen to scale back much of its most troubling interference in Iraq, and she credits the strength of U.S. pressure.

Rice told The Associated Press in an interview Monday that she doesn't think the Iranians are acting out of goodwill. She says Iran is finding it harder to operate inside next-door Iraq, and claimed that a turning point was last spring's rout of Iranian-backed forces in the southern city of Basra.

Rice, an architect of U.S. policy in Iraq, says Iran will continue to play a role in Iraq. But she also predicted that it will be a less meddlesome force. Rice also repeated claims that slow-moving U.N. sanctions are hurting Iran in the pocketbook.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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