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Iran still committed to talks on reviving nuclear deal: FM spokesman

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan’ani (File photo by Fars news agency)

Iran has reaffirmed its commitment to continue the talks aimed at reaching an agreement on the revival of the 2015 nuclear deal as the US and its European allies blame the protraction of the negotiations on Tehran.

“Iranian Foreign Minister [Hossein] Amir-Abdollahian recently reiterated that the Islamic Republic of Iran’s approach is to remain in the course of negotiations so as to reach a lasting and sustainable agreement that would simultaneously guarantee the fundamental interests of the government as well as those of the Iranian nation,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan’ani told reporters on Monday.

Kan’ani said the three EU parties to the deal – France, Britain and Germany – and the United States have linked the talks to the latest violent riots in Iran, asserting that Tehran will not allow other states to interfere in its domestic affairs.

“Iran’s positions and stances on the talks have been frequently declared, and we are prepared to follow the [diplomatic] path as before,” he said.

He further made clear that the Islamic Republic is ready for bilateral interaction with all parties so that the negotiations would come to fruition.

“We will firmly stand up against any attempt by Western parties and the US government to impose new sanctions, exert pressure or set restrictions for the sake of concessions and compromise. We will respond in due time,” he added.

The United States, under former president Donald Trump, abandoned the JCPOA in May 2018 and reinstated the sanctions that the deal had lifted.

The talks to salvage the agreement kicked off in Vienna in April last year, months after Biden succeeded Trump, with the intention of examining Washington’s seriousness in rejoining the deal and removing anti-Iran sanctions.

Despite notable progress, the US indecisiveness and procrastination caused multiple interruptions in the marathon talks.

Kan’ani also censured the recent attacks on Iranian embassies in some European countries and the meddlesome actions of Washington and certain European states in Iran’s affairs.

“We are witnessing double standards on the part of these countries. They are advising the Iranian government to exercise self-restraint in the face of those who are disturbing security. They should know that the Islamic Republic welcomes criticism and protests and believes in dialogue. But at the same time, it must guarantee public security and cannot remain silent in the face of unrest,” he said. 

“The governments that are advising the Iranian administration not to use violence are instead allowing violent people to attack Iranian embassies in their own respective countries despite the fact that missions enjoy diplomatic immunity. They allow violent people to assail Iranian diplomats. They allow an assailant holding a cold weapon to barge into the Iranian embassy and attack the female Iranian ambassador and other staff. The Islamic Republic is obliged to ensure the security of its citizens,” Kan’ani noted.

“The countries that are lecturing us on democracy allow terrorist groups to freely operate” on their soil against the Islamic Republic, he said.

According to the Iranian ambassador to Denmark, an assailant carrying a cold weapon trespassed on the Iranian Embassy in the Danish capital city of Copenhagen on Friday, started to threaten people there, created intimidation and fear, and caused damages to the vehicles in the parking lot of the Embassy.

Elsewhere in his remarks on Monday, Kan’ani pointed to the recent strikes by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Ground Force against the positions of terrorist groups in Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan region, saying they followed the “official and transparent measures” that Tehran had already taken.

“Iran’s move to hit the bases of armed terrorist groups in the [Iraqi Kurdistan] region followed all measures that Iran has already adopted,” he said.

Kan’ani said Iran expects Iraq to fulfill its promises and ensure full security along the common border.

Iran has on countless occasions warned Iraqi Kurdistan’s local authorities that it will not tolerate the presence and activity of terrorist groups along its northwestern borders, saying the country will give a decisive response should those areas become a hub of anti-Islamic Republic terrorists.

Back in May, the IRGC struck and demolished positions of terrorist groups operating near the country’s western borders in Iraq’s northern Kurdish regional capital of Erbil.

Also in September last year, the IRGC launched an attack in northern Iraq, where it destroyed four bases belonging to hostile groups.

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