Iran FM, UN chief discuss Vienna talks

December 17, 2021 - 21:4

TERHAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian has spoken over the phone with United Nations Secretary General António Guterres to discuss the latest status of Vienna talks and some other issues of mutual interest.

During the conversation, Amir Abdollahian said the Iranian delegation is sitting at the negotiating table with initiatives and necessary powers and is making efforts to reach a good deal, the Iranian foreign ministry said. 

He said one reason why the talks are slow is that the Western side has no initiatives, stressing, “We have presented two draft documents regarding sanctions removal and nuclear issues which conform to the Iran nuclear deal, JCPOA, and we made no demand beyond the JCPOA and at the same time will not accept any obligations beyond the JCPOA”.

Amir Abdollahian added that the Iranian side made good proposals at the talks which can serve as a basis for a lasting agreement.

He noted, “Just as we have reiterated time and again, the prerequisite for removing the West’s alleged concerns is to fully remove the JCPOA-related sanctions”.

“After the secretary general of the International Atomic Energy Agency condemned the act of sabotage at the Karaj site in Iran, we declared as a goodwill gesture that we will allow the installing of cameras at the site”, said the foreign minister.

Iran’s top diplomat also noted that we ate seeking a good deal with goodwill and active initiatives but will not tolerate the language of threat. The western sides should know that threats against Iran are counterproductive. The two sides then turned to the issue of Lebanon. Given that the UN chief is going to travel to Lebanon in the near future, Amir Abdollahian said we have always supported Lebanon’s national unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity. The Islamic Republic of Iran supports efforts to help Lebanon.

He added the international community must confront the Zionist regime’s aggression against Lebanon.

The UN chief also said during the phone call that the Vienna talks are important. Guterres said we believe that the JCPOA is an important document and its structure is very useful for international peace and stability.

The UN secretary general also said that the UN’s stance on the JCPOA has always been clear and candid and it has supported the deal.

Guterres thanked the Islamic Republic of Iran for cooperating with the IAEA and its decision to allow installing cameras at Karaj facility. He said this is a sign of Iran’s good cooperation with the agency, which will have a positive impact on confidence building process during the talks.

Guterres said we will use all mechanisms at the UN disposal and will do our best so that the Vienna talks will produce good results.

The UN secretary general also said his visit to Lebanon is aimed at creating unity and convergence among the Lebanese people, adding I believe Lebanon’s problems can be solved by its people.

Negotiations proceeding based on JCPOA

The Iranian foreign minister also expounded on the Vienna talks in an Instagram post. 

“On the last day of the conference of ‘Heads of Missions of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Neighboring Countries’, which was attended by the deputies of this ministry, I presented my summary of the conference and its feedback,” he wrote, adding, “In this summary, I pointed out the importance of the meetings held at the conference. Due to the presence of about half of the cabinet members during the week, meetings have already been held in the relevant departments of the government to review the problems and solutions presented by the heads of Iranian missions, and working groups have been formed in this regard.”

He pointed out, “In part of my comments, I mentioned that the imports of vaccines amid the coronavirus pandemic was the first test for Iranian missions abroad at the beginning of the 13th administration, and I said that fortunately today, with strenuous efforts to follow up on the issue and the endeavors made, more than 80% of the people of the country and 86% of the residents of Tehran province have been vaccinated.”

Amir Abdollahian noted, “I further reminded the attendants that the second mission assigned by the administration to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is moving quickly to help provide for aspects of livelihood and meet the needs of society, so that its effect on the lives and tables of the people is clearly visible. In this regard too, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, both inside the country and in its foreign missions, has begun making every endeavor.”

He said, “In another part of my speech, I referred to the ongoing talks in Vienna between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the P4+1 countries, making it clear that dignified talks have been on the agenda since the beginning of the thirteenth administration, and that the same approach continues with the seriousness and hard work of the negotiating team. Of course, I also pointed out that some of the claims made about demands that go beyond the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in the texts proposed by our country's negotiating team are pure lies because these texts are completely based on the JCPOA and there is no point in them that goes beyond the JCPOA.”

The foreign minister concluded, “Two series of texts are currently being discussed in Vienna; a draft text that is the result of 6 rounds of talks that were left unfinished in June 2020 due to disagreements. At the same time, the other parties have agreed that the newly proposed texts by Iran should remain on the table in order to obtain a single concise text from the discussions and combination of all of them. At the end of my speech, I expressed hope that the other parties will continue their efforts in good faith and with a view to resolving the issue. I emphasized that if the other parties act realistically, we would be able to make progress in this round of negotiations.”

Meeting with Hungarian counterpart

Amir Abdollahian also met with the Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Péter Szijjártó, to discuss issues of mutual interest between the two countries.

In the meeting, Amir Abdollahian, after reviewing bilateral economic, political and cultural relations, expressed hope that Szijjártó’s trip and the upcoming plans will bring about changes and development of relations between Tehran and Budapest in various fields. The Iranian foreign minister described the historical relations between Iran and Hungary as an opportunity. He said although the ties have at times been affected by some issues resulting from the actions of third parties, they can be put on track toward progress and development through adopting a proper and balanced approach.

Amir Abdollahian also touched on the issue of economic relations and referred to the second session of the Joint Commission of Cooperation during the Hungarian foreign minister’s visit to Tehran. He underlined the need to review bilateral cooperation based on existing capacities to increase economic and trade cooperation on both sides. Amir Abdollahian also stressed the activation of private economic sectors in the two countries and the removal of barriers to ties and exchanges of delegations, especially regarding the issuance of visas.

The Iranian foreign minister said the mutual acceptance of the Covid-19 vaccination certificates between the two countries is an important step toward removing the barriers to traffic and communication between the citizens of the two countries, including businessmen, students, professors and other sectors. Amir Abdollahian described the measure as good and valuable.

Amir Abdollahian also described the presence of more than 2500 Iranian students and professors in Hungary as a good opportunity to help expand mutual cooperation in various fields.

He welcomed the approach of the Hungarian government to develop cooperation in the cultural field and described the activities and cooperation of the two countries in this area as the basis for working in other fields.

Péter Szijjártó also expressed pleasure at his presence in Iran and at the preparation of the second meeting of the Joint Commission for Economic Cooperation. He emphasized his country's view on cooperation based on mutual respect.

The Hungarian foreign minister said his country’s people have cultural interests, and, therefore, emphasized the interest and respect of Hungarians for Iran due to its ancient history, culture and civilization. Szijjártó further expressed hope that Iran and Hungary cooperate in the field of cultural heritage and museums.

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