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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran to quit talks if its interests are not secured: Araqchi

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, Feb 23, IRNA -- In a response to remarks by US officials, Deputy Foreign Minister and Iran's senior nuclear negotiator Abbas Araqchi said Tehran attaches no importance to media hype and continues talks as long as there is respect at the negotiating table.

Iranian nation and nuclear negotiators as the sons of the nation will never surrender to threats, bullying, pressures, and force, Araqchi said.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Saturday that "significant gaps" remained and warned that Washington was ready to walk away from the talks if Tehran didn't agree to terms demonstrating that it doesn't want atomic arms.

'We have already faced this kind of American rhetoric and it is unfortunate that they repeat it while it has completely failed,' Araqchi added.

'Both Americans and other members of 5+1 Group (Russia, Britain, France, China, Germany) have experienced several times that political or media pressures do not cause Iran to change its approaches, demands, and stances in the negotiations whatsoever.'

Stressing that the negotiations should continue in a win-win situation, Araqchi said if one side tries to impose its will through non-negotiating methods, Iran will have no doubt to walk away from the talks, 'but this is not what we are in now'.

'We continue the talks strongly, but whenever we feel that the negotiations do not secure our national interests, we will certainly walk away.'

On the presence of Head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization Ali- Akbar Salehi and US Energy Secretary in the negotiations, Araqchi said presence of Salehi was very useful because he is an expert on the technical aspects of the talks.

'We can't claim yet that there is a breakthrough in the talks and there are still gaps, but all the sides are seriously trying to get closer to a settlement 'although there are not complete solutions in key problems, yet,' said the Iranian negotiator.


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