The Joseph Biden administration has initiated talks with Iran, through Switzerland, on the subject of American citizens detained on Iranian territory, informs the Reuters agency.
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“It is a priority to bring American citizens home safely. We have begun talking to Iranians about this. We will not accept a situation where Iranians continue to hold American citizens incorrectly and illegally. It is utterly outrageous,” he said. , for CBS News, Jake Sullivan, President Joseph Biden’s National Security Adviser.
In recent years, Iran has arrested dozens of dual nationals, including Americans, mainly on espionage charges.
In response, Tehran Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said, according to ISNA, that “there is no direct dialogue between Iran and the United States in any area.” “Our priority is the release of Iranian detainees from the United States,” the Iranian official said.
Another Iranian official said that “all talks are taking place through the Swiss Embassy in Tehran.”
The Joseph Biden administration signaled last week that the United States would accept an invitation from the European Union to resume negotiations with Iran on the Iranian Nuclear Agreement (JCPOA). “Iran has not yet given an answer,” Jake Sullivan said on Sunday.
Iran has called on the United States to immediately lift sanctions imposed by the Donald Trump administration over Iran’s nuclear program, as Washington has signaled its readiness to resume talks with Tehran.
“The United States must unconditionally lift all sanctions imposed by Donald Trump. In that case, we would immediately lift all measures in response to the sanctions,” Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Friday.
Enrique Mora, a senior European diplomat, said the European Union was “ready” to hold talks on Iran’s nuclear program in a “critical time”.
Iran has stepped up uranium storage activities in response to the United States’ withdrawal from the nuclear deal signed by major powers with Tehran.
President Hassan Rohani said Iran would return to full compliance with its 2015 nuclear commitments only if the United States lifts sanctions.
President Joseph Biden has signaled that the United States could return to the Iranian nuclear deal, but called for additional clauses limiting Iran’s ballistic activities and Tehran’s regional influence.
Relations between the United States and Iran are strained due to Iran’s nuclear program and ballistic activities. Washington is unhappy with Iran’s influence over some Middle Eastern countries. Former President Donald Trump decided in 2018 to withdraw the United States from the Iranian Nuclear Agreement and re-impose sanctions. France, Britain, China, Russia and Germany maintain the Atomic Agreement with Iran.
The new Israeli ambassador to Washington, Gilad Erdan, has warned that Israel could dissociate itself from the Joseph Biden Administration’s strategy on Iran’s nuclear program if the United States returns to the 2015 Atomic Agreement.
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