TEHRAN -- Foreign Minister Hussein Amir-Abdollahian says Iran welcomes negotiations on the revival of the 2015 nuclear deal, but it believes that “engaging in negotiations for the sake of negotiations is not acceptable.”
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has kept its end of the bargain in maintaining the JCPOA through its strategic patience in the face of the U.S. withdrawal and the inaction of the European side, and now it’s about time for the other JCPOA parties to cooperate and honor their commitments in a real and practical manner,” he said in phone conversation with his Austrian counterpart Alexander Schallenberg on Thursday.
In early April, Iran and the remaining parties to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) began talks in Vienna after the Biden administration voiced willingness to rejoin the nuclear agreement.
The negotiations were suspended after the victory of Ebrahim Raeisi in Iran’s June 18 presidential election.
In a separate phone conversation on Thursday, Amir-Abdollahian told his German counterpart Heiko Maas that any negotiations on the revival of the nuclear accord must lead to the removal of the illegal sanctions imposed on the country.
“We agree on the essence of Vienna talks, but we accept those negotiations that would lead to the removal of the sanctions and meet the inalienable rights of Iran,” he said.
The top Iranian diplomat advised the three European parties to the JCPOA, Germany, the UK and France, also known as E3, to change course with regard to the implementation of the deal and end their inaction toward their JCPOA obligations.
Amir-Abdollahian said the Americans do not have a correct understanding of the region and its people, particularly Iran.
“The Americans need to know that they must speak only through the language of respect, courtesy and logic, and that the language they occasionally use
not only does not help resolve the problems, but creates more problems in itself,” he said.
The Iranian foreign minister also criticized the Americans for their hypocrisy, saying that they have even created obstacles to the delivery of pharmaceutical and vital products such as vaccines produced in Germany to Iran.
He was making a reference to the U.S. claim that the sanctions don’t affect humanitarian activities even though they have restricted Iran’s ability to transfer money and buy medicines and medical equipment from other countries.
Maas said for his part that his country was ready to boost its bilateral relations with Iran in different fields.
He also called for the resumption of the Vienna talks as soon as possible.
Four weeks after the inauguration of President Raisi, it remains unclear if and when the Vienna nuclear talks could resume.
“The other side understands that a two- to three-month process will be needed for the new government to be established and then to plan for any decision (on the nuclear issue), but this is one of the issues on the agenda of the Foreign Ministry and the government,” Amir-Abdollahian said earlier.
Amir-Abdollahian also rejected Biden’s statement during his meeting with the occupying regime of Israel’s extremist prime minister Naftali Bennett last week that if diplomacy with Iran fails, the U.S. will consider other options.
The new Iranian foreign minister said the U.S. must avoid the mistakes and threats of the past and speak politely to Iran.
One key decision to be made in Tehran is who will lead the negotiations.
During the Hassan Rouhani presidency, the Foreign Ministry handled the indirect talks with the U.S., but several reports in recent weeks have suggested that authority could be passed under Raisi to Iran’s Supreme National Security Council.
Amir-Abdollahian said the Iranian parliament would expect Iran’s new nuclear negotiators to take a tougher line in order to get a better deal for Iran.