With the mounting crisis in Iran, the appointment of opposition leader Dr Shapur Baktiar as civilian Prime Minister to take from the military Administration, was hoped to go some way to appeasing the militant opposition to the Shah and create a climate for return to more normal conditions democracy in the troubled country.
CU & SV New prime Minister Dr Shapur Baktiar (FOUR SHOTS)
SV INTERIOR reporter Simon Dring and Mr Baktiar leave house
CU Dr Baktiar speaking in English
GV PAN EXTERIOR Shah's Royal Palace (TWO SHOTS)
CU Iran's Ambassador to U.S. Mr Ardeshir Zahedi speaking in English in reply to reporter's question
DRING: "Doctor Baktiar is sixty, a veteran politician and a former minister under Dr Mossadeq in the early fifties. In some ways he has a clean record of opposition to the Shah. But his agreement, without consultation, to become Prime Minister led to his expulsion from the party last week. He has, however, ploughed on regardless, even though he admits that it is very difficult to be a Prime Minister in Iran. He did not want to discuss policy but I asked him how soon he felt he'd be able to a announce a new Government.
BAKTIAR: "I hope it will be at the beginning of the next Iranian week."
DRING: "And you are actually making progress?"
BAKTIAR: "Oh, lot of, yes. I am optimistic in principle.
DRING: "And do you think your solution, what you are offering, will in fact work and help to defuse the crises."
BAKTIAR: "Definitely. Well that will not be easy at the beginning, but I hope that can be very, very useful in the near future. Thank you."
DRING: "Dr Baktiar, thank you very much."
DRING: "It is now expected that Dr Baktiar will present his new Government to the country' Parliament and that it will be officially accepted by the Shah before the weekend. Certainly this is what the Shah is banking on."
KIKER: "Is the United States standing quite firmly behind him?"
ZAHEDI: "Well, Doug, let me tell you one thing as an Iranian, I don't care whether the United States stand behind Iran or not. We are an independent country and I do not think I would allow any county, whether it be the United States or the Soviet Union or whether it would be Britain or any other super power to interfere in our business. At the same time, you have to remember that Iran and the United States are allied country. Not only under CENTO, but also we have bilateral agreements. This is why we actually have an intercourse between ourselves and as ambassador up to this second, which I am sitting with you, I do not have anything but a very, very close relationship between Iran and the United States, which is the President Carter, and the Shah, and I don not see any reason, even a matter of selfish point of view, if you would like to look at it, I think it is in the interests of the free world that a personality like the Shah would leave the country."
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Background: With the mounting crisis in Iran, the appointment of opposition leader Dr Shapur Baktiar as civilian Prime Minister to take from the military Administration, was hoped to go some way to appeasing the militant opposition to the Shah and create a climate for return to more normal conditions democracy in the troubled country. The BBC's Simon Dring interviewed the newly appointed Prime Minister and Douglas Kiker of N.B.C. interviews Iran's Ambassador to the USA, Mr Ardeshir Zahedi.