TEHRAN – The Supreme Leader announced on Thursday that the recent U.S. overture for bilateral negotiation with Iran is not out of “good faith” and insisted that the Islamic Republic “will not negotiate under pressure”.
“The U.S. is pointing a gun at Iran and wants us to talk to them. But you should know that pressure and negotiation are not compatible with each other and the Iranian nation will not be intimidated by these things,” Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told a number of Air Force commanders.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said on Saturday that Washington is prepared to hold direct talks with Iran over its nuclear program. Biden also claimed "the ball is in the government of Iran's court" to show that it's negotiating in good faith.
The Leader countered back, saying, “The ball is in your court.”
The Leader asked, "Generally does speaking of negotiations while at the same time increasing threats and pressure have any real meaning?"
According to the Wall Street Journal, Washington tightened sanctions against Iran on Wednesday in an attempt to further limit the country’s ability to transfer its oil revenue from banks abroad.
“Negotiation is for proving one’s goodwill (but) you (Americans) do tens of things out of ill intention and then say negotiation! Can the Iranian nation believe that you have good intention?” the Leader asked.
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution went on to say, “I’m not a diplomat; I’m a revolutionary, and speak frankly and directly.”
While some “simple-minded people” might be eager for the prospect of bilateral talks, Iran had seen nothing from the Obama administration other than conspiracies, the Leader noted. “If anyone wants the return of U.S. dominance here, people will grab his throat.”
Pointing to increasing sanctions against Iran, the Leader said, "You (Americans) have said you want to paralyze our people with sanctions, is this a sign of good faith or bad faith?"
The Leader said the reason that U.S. officials are proposing direct negotiations with Tehran is that their policies in the Middle East have ended in failure. “Of course, we understand their need for negotiations because Americans’ Middle East policies have failed.”
Negotiations becomes “meaningful” only when the two sides show “goodwill” and enter dialogue on an “equal footing” without an “intention of deceiving” each other, Ayatollah Khamenei said, adding, “negotiation for negotiation” or “tactical negotiation” is a “deceptive move”.
The Leader added, “Negotiations with the U.S. will not solve any problem because they (Americans) have not kept up any of their promises over the recent 60 years.”
The Leader cited the 1953 coup against the democratically elected government of Mohammad Mosaddeq and support for the despotic regime of Pahlavi of as instances of the U.S. animosity against Iran over the last six decades.
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