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Iran Press TV

Iran FM: Vienna talks not paused; US has understood Tehran's red lines

Iran Press TV

Tuesday, 03 May 2022 10:02 AM

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian says negotiations on the revival of the 2015 Iran deal have not been paused, stressing that Tehran and Washington are in indirect correspondence to reach an agreement on removing the anti-Iran sanctions.

"The Vienna talks have not been paused, but they continue in another process to remove the unilateral sanctions imposed on us and through the exchange of written messages with the Americans through the EU representative," Amir-Abdollahian told Yemen's Arabic-language al-Masirah television network on Tuesday.

He underlined that Iran's objective in the talks is to reach a "strong" and "permanent" agreement.

"We urged the American side to be realistic," he said. "Removing sanctions in all areas and receiving economic guarantees are among the most important items on our negotiating team's agenda."

The chief Iranian diplomat also said he believes the Americans have perfectly understood Iran's red lines.

He added, "We will continue the dialog. As soon as an agreement is about to be reached, our representative in the negotiations will make the final changes to the agreement."

Several rounds of negotiations have been held in the Austrian capital since April 2021 to bring the US back into the Iran deal. The Vienna talks, however, exclude American diplomats due to their country's withdrawal from the deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), on May 8, 2018.

Recent weeks have brought the talks to a new impasse, as the US insists on its refusal to remove Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) from its foreign terrorist organization list.

Iran maintains that the IRGC's designation in 2019 was part of the former Donald Trump administration's so-called maximum pressure campaign against Iran, and therefore, it has to be reversed unconditionally.

The Joe Biden administration disagrees, even though it has admitted on countless occasions that Trump's maximum pressure policy has been a disastrous failure. It has retained the IRGC's designation as leverage in the talks.

"If Iran wants to ... put issues on the table that are outside the confines of the JCPOA, Iran will of course have to be in a position to make concessions on those issues," US State Department spokesman Ned Price said on Monday, in a veiled reference to the designation. "That's just the very nature of any negotiation."

The Islamic Republic has made clear that both the JCPOA and the UN Security Council Resolution 2231 are the benchmarks for the Vienna talks, rejecting anything less or more than those two.

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