Iran president discusses Vienna talks with French counterpart

January 30, 2022 - 18:52

TEHRAN – Iranian President Ayatollah Seyed Ebrahim Raisi received a phone call from his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron on Saturday evening.

Strategies to strengthen bilateral relations, regional issues and the latest status of talks in Vienna for a lifting of sanctions on Iran were the focus of the telephone conversation, according to the official website of the Iranian presidency.

Referring to an acknowledgement by the U.S. that the policy of maximum pressure against Iran has failed, Ayatollah Raisi said, "The Islamic Republic of Iran has shown its will and seriousness to reach an agreement in the negotiation process, and any effort by the other side in this regard should include the lifting of sanctions, verification and valid guarantee.”

The Iranian president also said stability and security in the region can only be achieved through intra-regional solutions and not foreign interventions. 

In his talks with Macron, Raisi also called on the international community to pay attention to the humanitarian crisis in Yemen and lift the siege on the oppressed people of the country.

For his part, the French president stressed that the Islamic Republic of Iran has the right to distrust the United States because it was Washington that caused the crisis by quitting the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement.

Developments in the region, including the situation in Lebanon, were other topics of discussion between the presidents of Iran and France.

The conversation came after negotiators from Iran and the P4+1 group of countries – Russia, China, France, and Britain plus Germany – returned to capitals for a short break intended to make consultations.
The negotiators representing the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal are having a break in the Vienna talks on the revival of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and lifting of the sanctions on Tehran, Tasnim reported on Saturday. 

Citing a source close to the Iranian team of negotiators, the news agency said the parties involved in the Vienna talks would return to their capitals for a hiatus and will proceed with the meetings after a couple of days.

“Considering the significance of the outstanding subjects and the necessity of adopting political decisions, it was agreed that the delegations return to the capitals for consultations,” the source said.

Before the break in the eighth round of the Vienna talks, the top negotiators of Iran, Russia and China held a trilateral meeting in the Austrian capital.

Diplomats participating in the talks have described the eighth round of talks as the most intensive one that has included many bilateral and multilateral meetings.

In a post on his Twitter account on Friday, Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service for Political Affairs Enrique Mora said, "The 8th round of the #ViennaTalks #JCPOA, which started 27 December, so far the longest, takes a break. Participants will go back to capital for consultations and instructions to come back next week. Political decisions are needed now. Safe travels to all participants.”

In a recent phone call with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian described the Vienna talks as positive and reiterated the Islamic Republic’s serious determination to reach a good agreement in the shortest time possible.

Amir Abdollahian reaffirmed lack of trust in the White House’s rulers and emphasized the need for America and the Western side to adopt practical, tangible and verifiable measures in order to prove the possibility of achieving a lasting, reliable deal.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Iranian foreign minister attended the parliament at the invitation of the legislative body’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee and answered questions by lawmakers and outlined the latest state of the Vienna talks.

Amir Abdollahian gave a report on the trend of the negotiations within the framework of sanctions removal, nuclear obligations, receiving guarantees and verification.

He also answered questions from the MPs and heard the opinions of those attending the committee session.

The Iranian foreign minister outlined the serious efforts of chief Iranian negotiator Ali Bagheri and the initiatives put forth by the Islamic Republic and its negotiating team.

Amir Abdollahian said Iran’s determination to reach a good, lasting and reliable deal is absolute.

Amir Abdollahian also underlined that to date, there have been no direct talks between the negotiating teams of Iran and the United States, saying technical opinions of the two sides are exchanged in writing and through mediation by the European Union’s coordinator.

Mahmood Abbas-Zadeh Meshkini, who is the spokesman for the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the parliament, has said that some issues in Vienna have remained unresolved. He said that the West seeks to get concessions from Iran and tries to create stress among the Iranian people through unsuccessful projects.

The lawmaker noted that Amir Abdollahian has come to the Majlis (Parliament) to respond to the questions of the lawmakers about Iran’s negotiations with other participants to the JCPOA.

Lawmakers made suggestions on the Vienna talks, he said, adding that the foreign minister insists that there haven’t been any direct negotiations between Iran and the U.S. up until now.

According to the lawmaker, negotiations with other participants to the JCPOA have been good so far.

“Getting objective and comprehensive guarantees are important to us and we insist on getting verifications from the West. Some progress has been made but some issues still remain,” Meshkini said.

“The West seeks to get concessions from Iran and tries to create stress among the Iranian people through unsuccessful projects but they don’t achieve their goal. What is important is reaching a stable, original, comprehensive, and win-win deal that with the guidance of the Supreme Leader and in the framework of the national interest will happen,” he said.

“Iran seeks a durable deal. The deal should be a win-win to answer the West’s concerns and lead to sanctions lifting on Iran. The other side wants an interim agreement to break the deal any time,” he added.
Earlier, in an exclusive interview with the ICANA news agency, MP Seyed Mohammad Reza Mir-Tajedini said that the U.S. return to the deal depends on Washington giving a guarantee the sanctions are permanently removed.

He reacted to recent comments about the return of the U.S. to the Iran talks and said that the U.S. by withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) under the presidency of Donald Trump made two strategic mistakes.

Mir-Tajedini said that the U.S. violated the JCPOA due to its pullout from the deal and this action violated Resolution 2231 of the United Nations Security Council that endorsed the agreement.

Today Americans can’t change the playing field through projection and propaganda against Iran's nuclear activity, the lawmaker said, adding that the only way of returning the U.S. to the table of negotiation is removing all the sanctions and getting the U.S to comply with its obligations.

“The U.S. must show serious will and practical action. They should guarantee that if the government of the U.S. is changed, the new president will not violate the Iran deal,” he added.

Ebrahim Azizi, who is the deputy chairman of the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Iranian parliament, said the Iranian negotiating team should seek to get a verifiable sanctions relief and pursue guarantees that the other side won’t renege on its commitment in case a deal was made.

“News coming from Vienna show that progress has been made, however, we are waiting for [Iran’s chief negotiator Ali] Bagheri to return to the country and brief the Majlis (parliament) and national security committee on the negotiations,” Azizi told ICANA.