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Raeisi: Negotiations, 'pressure' don’t go hand in hand

Frame grab from President Ebrahim Raeisi’s first televised address to the Iranian nation on September 4, 2021.

President Ebrahim Raeisi dismisses the idea of holding negotiations over the revival of the country's nuclear agreement under pressure, saying such tactics has never yielded the US and Europe any result.

“Negotiation and dialog have always been and will continue to be part of the instruments that are in the service of diplomacy. We do not balk at negotiation and dialog,” he said during his first televised address to the people on Saturday.

“But the Americans and the Westerners are after negotiation in conjunction with pressure,” he added, “This is while negotiations are there to avoid pressure.”

Such pressure tactics have nothing to do with negotiation, the Iranian chief executive said, adding, “I have directed them (the country’s authorities) to include negotiation on the agenda, but not under the shadow of the pressure that they (the West) are pursuing.”

The United States and the Europeans have experienced this in the past too that applying such tactics to negotiation procedures “do not work,” Raeisi said.

‘Negotiation for the sake of negotiation out of question’

At the same time the country rules out any such notion as “negotiation for the sake of negotiation” the president said.

He, therefore, urged that any interaction of the type reward the country with its expected results, namely the removal of Washington’s oppressive sanctions targeting the Iranian nation.

The US reimposed the sanctions after illegally and unilaterally leaving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)—a historic nuclear agreement between Iran and others.

US President Joe Biden has not lived up to his campaign pledge of returning Washington to the JCPOA, while the Europeans have been toeing America’s sanctions line as closely as possible.

Raeisi, however, asserted, “I will not take even one step back from [trying to revive] the Iranian nation’s rights, because they (the US and the Europeans) have subjected the nation to pressure through the sanctions.”

US, others afflicted Afghanistan with ‘great wound’

Elsewhere in his remarks, the Iranian president said the US military presence in Afghanistan for two decades only resulted in the suffering of the Afghan people.

“As a result of the oppression that the Americans and [other] foreign countries imposed on Afghanistan, the country has suffered a great wound,” the president said.

“The issue of Afghanistan showed that not only does not the US’s presence contribute to security anywhere in the world, but also it disrupts the [occupied] area’s security,” he stated.

Raeisi considered the only way out of Afghanistan’s woes to be the establishment of an all-inclusive and representative government in the absence of all foreign interference. 

“They should let Afghanistan take its own decisions in the area,” the president said.

Iran considers Afghanistan and all other neighboring countries’ security to be integrated with its own, he added, urging speedy reestablishment of calm in the violence-wracked country.

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