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Iran Says Talks On Nuclear Deal To Resume 'Very Soon'

Updated

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian (file photo)

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian says Tehran will return to negotiations on resuming compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal "very soon."

Speaking on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York on September 24, Amir-Abdollahian also described conversations between Iranian and Saudi officials as "constructive" and said Tehran had put forward dynamic proposals toward achieving peace in Yemen.

Iran has held six rounds of talks this year with world powers in Vienna aimed at reviving the nuclear accord, which was abandoned by former U.S. President Donald Trump in 2018. The negotiations were suspended in June when hard-liner Ebrahim Raisi was elected as Iran's new president.

A senior U.S. official on September 23 voiced growing frustration at a lack of Iranian movement toward talks on reviving the moribund nuclear agreement with world powers.

"For now there is no positive indication that Iran is prepared to come back to talks," the official was quoted as saying on condition of anonymity, noting that Tehran had not yet named a new negotiator for the meetings.

But Amir-Abdollahian sought to allay concerns that Tehran intended to abandon the talks.

"We are not seeking to quit the negotiating table," he told the official IRNA news agency on September 24.

"We will certainly pursue a negotiation that serves the rights and interests of our nation."

Later, a senior Iranian official speaking on condition of anonymity said that by "very soon," Tehran "can mean a few days, it can mean a few weeks."

But, the official said, "As soon as we finish the review process, without any time to be wasted, we shall return to the negotiations table."

Amir-Abdollahian's statement came after Raisi earlier this week told the UN General Assembly that Iran wants talks with world powers to revive the deal to lead to the removal of all U.S. sanctions.

Iran considers useful talks "whose ultimate outcome is the lifting of all oppressive sanctions," Raisi said in a prerecorded speech on September 21.

The same day, President Joe Biden told the General Assembly that the United States will return to the nuclear deal "in full" if Tehran does the same and will "engage Iran diplomatically."

Amir-Abdollahian accused Biden of "paradoxical behavior" in pursuing negotiations while imposing new sanctions "[that] has not been, and is not, a positive message or constructive message for the new administration in Tehran."

With reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP
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