Advisor urges U.S. to change course on Iran

August 16, 2019 - 18:3

TEHRAN – A change in the actions of the United States toward the Iranian nation is an essential prerequisite for any new decision by Tehran, says a top foreign policy advisor to the Iranian parliament speaker, regarding the possibility of Tehran-Washington talks.

Hossein Amir Abdollahian made the remarks during a meeting with new South African Ambassador to Tehran Vika Mazwi Khumalo on Wednesday, Mehr reported.

The South African envoy, for his part, expressed regret over the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and re-imposition of sanctions.

U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the 2015 nuclear agreement (JCPOA) in May 2018. The U.S. then reimposed the “harshest sanctions” on Iran but at the same time pushed for talks with Tehran. 

Tehran says a U.S. return to the JCPOA and lifting of the illegal sanctions are necessary prerequisites for any further collaboration with Washington.

Weeks ago, the U.S. announced imposition of sanctions against Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, a move which was interpreted as a total rejection of diplomacy repeatedly claimed by the Trump administration.

“Zarif is in charge of the country’s foreign policy and diplomacy … By sanctioning Zarif, they (Americans) deprived themselves of dialogue,” government spokesman Ali Rabiei said afterwards.

Rabiei said it is utterly absurd that the U.S., which claims to be an advocate of dialogue, has sanctioned Iran’s foreign minister right after inviting him to the Oval Office for talks.