By staff and agency

Trump reiterates no pre-condition for talks with Iran

June 22, 2019 - 19:37

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday that there is no pre-condition for U.S. talks with Tehran.

In an exclusive interview with NBC, he said that he doesn’t want war with Iran.

Trump also discussed his decision-making process that led him to halt strikes on Iran on Thursday night, saying that he hadn't given final approval to any attack and adding that no planes were in the air.

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) shot down a highly-sophisticated U.S. stealth drone on Thursday morning after it violated Iran’s airspace.

During a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on June 13, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei dismissed Trump as a person not worthy of exchanging messages. The Leader said Iran has “no trust” in the United States and will not at all “repeat the bitter experience” it gained from the negotiations that led to the conclusion of a 2015 nuclear deal, which Washington later ditched.

“Iran engaged in talks with the U.S. and the Europeans for some five or six years, and achieved a result. The Americans, however, breached a done deal,” said the Leader, emphasizing that no wise man would enter talks with a country that has reneged on all agreements.

Back in April, President Hassan Rouhani likened Trump to a knifeman with whom Iran will not negotiate.

“Undoubtedly, accepting the demands of a knifeman who through bullying and lying is seeking negotiation will get nowhere,” Rouhani told a cabinet meeting.

Rouhani said Iran has always been seeking negotiation and diplomacy but negotiation is possible only when there is no pressure.

“We have always been the man of dialogue and diplomacy, as we have been the man of war and defense, but negotiation is possible only when all pressures are lifted and they apologize for their illegal measures and there is mutual respect,” Rouhani stated.

Tensions have been rising between Tehran and Washington since the U.S. withdrew from the UN-endorsed nuclear agreement in May last year and ordered sanctions on Iran.

Tensions entered a new stage since April when the U.S. designated the IRGC (part of the Iranian military) as a terrorist organization, announced that it does no renew waivers for the eight major buyers of the Iranian oil, and started beefing up its military presence in the region, particularly in the Persian Gulf.

In another provocative move, on Monday the U.S. announced deployment of about 1,000 more troops to the Middle East.

Ali Shamkhani, Iran’s secretary of Supreme National Security Council, said on Thursday that Iran will not attack anyone, however, he insisted on Tehran’s position that the aggressor will "regret" if Iran is attacked.

“Iran’s policy in supporting security and stability especially in current international situation and given the energy situation is clear. Tehran will not attack anyone. However, if it is attacked, the aggressor will regret,” he said in an interview with RT’s Arabic language.

He added that the U.S. military presence in the Persian Gulf and the Wider Middle East region is the main cause of tension between Tehran and Washington.


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