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Fresh deal with US unlikely due to confusion in its policy towards Iran: Foreign Ministry

Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi

Iran says working out a new agreement of any sort with the United States is impossible for the time being given the current state of uncertainty and ambiguity in the White House regarding its policy toward Iran.

“We are witnessing a state of confusion in America’s foreign policy toward the Islamic Republic of Iran. A new deal with them under the current circumstances seems unlikely,” said Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi in remarks to Iran’s al-Alam TV published on Thursday.

Mousavi said that Iran was still confident of its diplomatic capabilities to achieve solutions to current problems.

“We negotiated with the Americans for two years and it was the Americans who left the negotiating table,” he said, referring to Washington’s withdrawal last year from a 2015 multilateral nuclear deal reached between Iran and major world powers.

Mousavi's remarks came a day after Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said America's campaign of pressure against Tehran has failed, advising US President Donald Trump to return to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal if it wants a seat at the negotiating table.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Zarif said Tehran has always remained committed to its international commitments but Washington should first show that it is trustworthy before it can be allowed back to negotiations with Iran over the future of the deal -- known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Elsewhere in his remarks, Mousavi touched on recent attacks on Saudi Arabia's oil facilities, calling on those accusing Iran to provide “real not fake evidence” of Tehran’s involvement in the attacks. He said the US and Saudi Arabia should believe that Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement, which has resisted a four-year war by the Saudis and allies, took credit for the attacks and has offered evidence to substantiate it.

“The Yemenis have themselves declared that they were responsible for the attack, providing [related] evidence,” said Mousavi.

“But they (the US, allies) accuse Iran because they don’t believe that the oppressed Yemeni nation has achieved such capabilities with empty hands [as] they are under the most severe attacks and bombardments,” he added.

Mousavi noted, “When they suffer a blow, it seems the first and easiest move for both the Americans and other counties is to lay blame on Iran, which is totally unfounded.”

Pointing to Iran’s efforts to help end the Yemeni crisis, the official also said Iran has asked Yemen’s Ansarullah to attend various political meetings meant to solve the crisis in Yemen.

Yemeni armed forces conducted a large-scale operation against Saudi Arabia’s Aramco oil installations on Saturday, in response to the Saudi-led war on their country.

The Yemeni Houthi Ansarullah movement immediately took credit for the attacks, but US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo swiftly accused Iran of being behind the assault, without providing any evidence. Tehran categorically rejected the allegations.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia claimed on Wednesday that the strikes on its oil infrastructure came from the "north" and were "unquestionably" sponsored by Iran, adding that the Houthis were not responsible for the assault despite claiming it.

Shortly after the Saudi announcement, the spokesman for Yemeni Armed Forces, however, reiterated it was behind the weekend attack, stressing that the Houthis have new drones, powered by “normal and jet engines” that can reach targets deep in Saudi Arabia.

“Our forces have reached a high level of efficiency and ability. They can manufacture various types of unmanned aerial vehicles in record time. The Second Deterrent Balance Operation, which targeted Saudi oil installations, is a perfect example of the capabilities of our forces in terms of planning and implementation,” Brigadier General Yahya Saree said during a press conference in the capital Sana’a.

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