Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Iran: America is addicted to imposing sanctions … and Erdogan sees an “opportunity” to lift them


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London – “Al-Quds Al-Arabi” and agencies: Iranian Foreign Minister Muhammad Javad Zarif, in a television interview with “Press TV,” stated. In English-speaking Iran, that “the United States will not be able to rejoin the nuclear deal before the sanctions are lifted.”
He added, “Biden claims that the Trump administration’s approach to exerting maximum pressure was a great failure, but in principle and in practice, he continued the policy of the previous administration and did not change it.” He explained that the United States “has become addicted to sanctions, pressure and bullying, but these policies will not succeed with Iran.”
On Thursday, the Biden administration expressed its readiness to participate in talks sponsored by the European Union and with the participation of all parties to the agreement, to discuss possible ways to revive it.
White House spokeswoman Jane Saki said that the European Union had put forward the idea of ​​a meeting between Iran and the six major powers that signed the nuclear deal. She added, “The Europeans sent an invitation to us. It is just an invitation to hold a meeting and diplomatic talks.”
“We are studying the proposal of Josep Borrell to hold an informal meeting of the members of the 4 + 1 nuclear deal with the United States and Iran, and we are consulting with our partners, including Russia and China, and we will respond to this proposal in the future,” Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said Saturday in an interview with state television. . He continued, “But we believe that the return of the United States to the nuclear agreement does not require a meeting, and that the only way for it is to lift the sanctions.”
In another context, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said on Sunday that the United States had begun contacts with Iran, via Switzerland, about Americans being held by Tehran.
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said in early February that the United States was committed to seeking “the release of Americans held hostage or unfairly imprisoned abroad,” but he did not mention Iran.
He stressed, “We have started communicating with the Iranians about this issue.” He continued, “We will not accept a long-term solution while they continue to detain Americans unfairly and without legal basis.” Sullivan stressed that President Joe Biden is “determined” to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, and that diplomacy is the best way to do so. “Iran has not responded yet,” Sullivan said regarding the US desire to start talks on returning to the nuclear agreement signed between Tehran and the six world powers in 2015.
Meanwhile, Iran announced that it had held “fruitful” discussions, yesterday, Sunday, with the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, who visited it, two days before the start of the implementation of a law that reduces the work of international inspectors if the US sanctions are not lifted.
The day after his arrival in Tehran, Rafael Grossi, director of the United Nations agency, met with the head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization, Ali Akbar Salehi, followed by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. “Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency have conducted fruitful discussions based on mutual respect, and the results will be published this evening,” said Kazem Gharibabadi, Tehran’s ambassador to the Vienna-based agency, on Twitter after attending the Salehi-Grossi meeting.
In the context, Zarif said that Iran is ready to hold talks with its Arab neighbors “without preconditions.”
Yesterday, Bloomberg News quoted Zarif as saying in an interview on the state-run Press TV channel, “Iran is ready without preconditions to sit down and talk to its Arab neighbors. We want to live on good terms with our neighbors. We want to have a strong region. ” On Sunday, Zarif said, “If they think they can buy security from (Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu, then please.”
On Sunday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that there is an “opportunity” to lift US sanctions on Iran, during a phone call with his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani.
Erdogan said in a statement, “We hope that the new US administration will be able to abandon the unilateral sanctions against Iran (…) The recent statements have opened a new opportunity on this issue.”
The Turkish president also stressed that reactivating the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the nuclear agreement concluded in 2015 between Iran and the major powers (China, the United States, France, Britain, Russia and Germany), is the “most logical position” to be adopted.



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