Members of Iraqi Badr Brigades Shiite militia step on a representation of an Israeli flag during a commemoration of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day in Baghdad, Iraq, Friday, July. 10, 2015. (AP Photo/ Karim Kadim)
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The United States and Iran are likely to continue cautious diplomatic contacts following Tuesday's historic nuclear accord, but a broader blossoming of relations like the one U.S. President Barack Obama engineered with Cuba is years off at best, current and former U.S. officials said.Even before an unprecedented two years of direct dialogue on Iran's nuclear program, Washington and Tehran had diplomatic contacts when it suited both their interests. But the barriers to repeating such successes now are high, the current and former officials said, with some predicting U.S.-Iran ties could get more tense in the aftermath of the nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers.Obama, who must now sell the complex nuclear agreement to a skeptical Congress, said Wednesday there would be more diplomatic contact with Iran, but was restrained in his expectations.The Obama administration is divided over deeper cooperation with Iran, current and former officials said.Washington and Iran are in uneasy cooperation in Iraq, backing Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's government, but opposed in Syria, where Iran and its proxies help prop up Assad.
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