By Andrew Quinn
BOGOTA (Reuters) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Wednesday newly imposed U.N. sanctions would "interfere with" Iran's nuclear ambitions, and held out hope Turkey and Brazil could play a role in further diplomatic outreach to Tehran.
Clinton, speaking to reporters in Colombia where she was on a visit, said she was gratified by the Security Council vote in which the 15-member body imposed new sanctions on Tehran by a 12-2 vote with one abstention.
"Our goal is not to sanction Iran. Our goal is to end any doubts and questions about the purpose of Iran's nuclear program and to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons and that is a goal that is widely embraced in the international community," Clinton said.
She said the new U.N. sanctions, which set new measures against banks and companies believed to be involved in Iran's nuclear program, would be effective and might ultimately bring Tehran into real negotiations.
"We can, we believe, slow down and certainly interfere with and make much more difficult their continuing nuclear program through these sanctions," Clinton said. "At the same time, we do want them back at the negotiating table.
Clinton said that Brazil and Turkey, two influential non-permanent members of the Security Council which voted against the sanctions resolution after failing to broker a temporary deal between Iran and the western powers, might yet have a role as bridges to Tehran.
"In the ongoing diplomatic outreach to Iran, I think that Turkey and Brazil will continue to play an important role," Clinton said, adding that the two emerging powers may have hoped to "keep the door open" to Iran by voting "no" on the sanctions resolution.
Clinton said there might be ways to influence different elements of Iran's leadership, some of whom she thought were doubtful about what she called the country's drive to achieve nuclear weapons capability.
"There is a diversity of opinion within the leadership," she said.
Clinton spoke with Lebanon's President Michel Suleiman right before the vote. Lebanon -- the only Arab country on the Security Council -- abstained from the sanctions vote instead of opposing it as some had predicted. She said her message to Suleiman was one of solidarity.
(Editing by Eric Walsh)