Iran: MBS offered Tehran-Riyadh talks be made public and official

July 25, 2022 - 22:13

TEHRAN— Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani announced on Monday that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman has offered that the next round of Tehran-Riyadh talks be made public and official.

Iraq’s Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein told Rudaw on Saturday that Saudi Arabia and Iran have agreed to hold the first public meeting at the level of foreign ministers in Baghdad after five rounds of closed reconciliation meetings facilitated by the Iraqi government. He did not elaborate when the meeting will take place.

“Five rounds of negotiations between Iran and Saudi Arabia were held in Baghdad and fortunately, they bore good and encouraging results. After the Jeddah summit, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hossein had a phone call with Foreign Minister Amir Abdollahian and briefed him on the summit,” Kanaani told a weekly press briefing when asked about the timing of the next round of talks. 

The Jeddah summit was held last Sunday with the presence of U.S. President Joe Biden and some Arab leaders, including Iraqi Premier Mustafa al-Kadhimi. 
The spokesman added that during the phone call with Amir Abdollahian, Hussein pointed out that MBS had expressed his willingness and readiness to hold an official and public political dialogue between Iran and Saudi Arabia at the next meeting on the sidelines of the Jeddah summit. 

“This is a positive sign and we believe that due to the positive will of the parties to take a practical step forward, it is possible to hold the next meeting at the official and political level in Baghdad, and it will be a tangible and major step in the direction of promoting and resuming relations between the two countries,” Kanaani remarked.

He then expressed Iran’s appreciation for the Iraqi mediation in this regard.

Iran’s new representative in Vienna is selected

In response to a question by the Tehran Times correspondent about change of Iran’s permanent representative to international organizations in Vienna, the spokesman said that selections, appointments and designation of ambassadors and heads of Iranian missions is a logical and professional process in the foreign ministry, and new appointments are periodic changes.

“In Vienna, the head of the representative office has also been selected and, God willing, he will start working soon. Mr. Ghaebi (the acting representative in Vienna) is our good diplomat and his capacities will be used elsewhere,” he responded. 

Iran has not left negotiation table

Responding to a question about negotiations to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the official name for the 2015 nuclear deal, Kanaani said, “The principled policy of the government is to not condition the economy and people's livelihood to the process of sanctions-removal negotiations. Iran is committed to the negotiation process as a serious choice and will continue this path until a good, strong and stable agreement is reached. We are committed to this path.”

He reiterated that Iran has not left the negotiation table.

“Regardless of the positions taken on media, especially by the American officials, on the negotiation process and the psychological pressures and unilateral expectations from Iran that Iran must quickly reach a decision and the time is limited, Iran does not act emotionally or hastily in this regard, and it will not sacrifice the interests of the country and the nation to accelerate the process,” he noted.

The process of talks continues through communication channels, the spokesman added, both at the level of Iran's chief negotiator who exchanges messages with Enrique Mora, the European Union political coordinator, and at the level of the foreign minister, who converses and exchanges messages with Josep Borrell, the EU foreign policy chief. 

“Various proposals have been exchanged so far, and some other countries, including their foreign ministers stepped in with a friendly view and put forward proposals to bring the views closer together,” he said, adding that the foreign ministers of countries such as Oman, Qatar and Iraq have made and are making efforts, and other countries in Europe have stepped in. 

“Italy and France have made efforts based on good faith to bring the views closer together,” he noted. 

We have shown a great deal of flexibility

The spokesman went on to say that so far Tehran has shown a great deal of flexibility in the negotiations to put the JCPOA on the right track. 

“The Islamic Republic of Iran has so far presented various constructive initiatives, and we believe that if America, as the main party in determining the process of negotiations, acts as constructively and with good faith as Iran and reacts positively to Iran's positive initiatives, we are close to an agreement,” Kanaani stated. 

According to the Iranian diplomat, being close or far from the agreement is related to the political decision of the American government.

He added Iran is definitely interested in an agreement to bring the JCPOA back to life as soon as possible, but it will definitely not act emotionally and will consider the interests of the nation and the country.

We advise IAEA chief to act professionally

Responding to a question about the recent remarks of Rafael Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Organization, the spokesman said unlike the Israeli regime, Iran is a member of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), and for many years, especially in recent years, through an interactive and constructive approach and with the aim of ending misunderstandings, it has allowed the IAEA inspectors to visit the centers in question many times and consecutively. 

“Most of the missions of the Agency's inspectors to inspect nuclear centers were related to Iran's nuclear centers, and this was an interactive and voluntary approach with the intention of dealing with some problems that previously existed… Unfortunately, Iran's constructive actions have not been met with a constructive and mutual response by the Agency and the director general of the Agency,” he added. 

Kanaani continued by saying that unfortunately Grossi has numerously taken an unprofessional and unfair approach to Iran's nuclear program, especially in recent months.

“His views are not helpful and constructive. He is interested in taking a stance on Iran's nuclear issue from time to time. We believe that with reference to Iran's constructive cooperation with the Agency, the director general of the Agency must have a constructive and interactive approach. We do not consider the statements of the director general of the Agency to be technical and professional, and we invite him to observe the principle of neutrality and fairness and avoid statements with political motivations,” he explained. 

The diplomat noted that Tehran suspects that some of those remarks uttered by Grossi are statements made by the officials of the Israeli regime. 

“This position is an international position and must respect the principle of neutrality and respond to Iran’s cooperation in good faith. We invite them to avoid wrench-throwing in negotiations to lift sanctions and return all parties to an agreement. We do not consider these statements as constructive. It is better for Grossi to consider Iran’s constructive cooperation and instead pay attention to the illegal nuclear capacities of the Zionist regime and the fact that the nuclear warheads of this regime are not under the supervision of the Agency and Safeguards agreement and are a danger to international and regional security and the region's environment,” he stated. 

The diplomat concluded by noting that Tehran considers Grossi’s statements as “imprecise, non-technical, and biased”, and invites him to play a constructive role and be able to help in the negotiation process.

Leave a Comment

0 + 0 =