Tehran denies contact between Araghchi, Biden team

November 20, 2020 - 18:3

TEHRAN — Iran has denied a New York Times claim that the Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi has tried to contact with the team of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden, saying such rumors have become a norm in the mainstream media.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said on Friday that the Times report was completely made-up.

He added that no direct or indirect contact has been made between Tehran and the Biden camp.

The New York Times reported on November 17 that Araghchi has tried to pass on to Biden’s advisers through intermediaries Tehran’s insistence that the United States return to the Iran deal unconditionally before any talks resume.

Earlier this month, Khatibzadeh had dismissed speculations that Tehran was in contact with the Biden team before or after the U.S. presidential election, saying Iran will not be in contact with anyone outside of issues completely related to the nuclear pact.

Iran awaits the formation of the new administration in the U.S. to see what will happen, the spokesman said on November 9.

“We should see where the measures of the U.S. will lead to,” he said. “It is measures that matter not words, analyses, and speculations.”

On Wednesday, presidential chief of staff Mahmoud Vaezi also said the Rouhani administration is not in contact with the incoming Biden administration.

“The new U.S. administration will take office in two months,” Vaezi told reporters on the sidelines of a cabinet meeting. “We do not have enough communication to evaluate the talks.”

“The Foreign Ministry is ready to join negotiations with different scenarios provided that they join negotiations,” added Vaezi, who was the second-ranking person in the Foreign Ministry during the Rafsanjani administration.


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