Iran’s Raisi vows not to back down on nuclear talks with major powers

Iran will not back down “in any way” in defending its interests, President Ebrahim Raisi said on Thursday, a day after all parties announced the resumption of nuclear talks between Tehran and major powers on November 29.

Washington said it hoped the talks would see Iran willing to negotiate in good faith on the reactivation of a 2015 nuclear deal, while Iran’s top nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani said the talks would cover the removal of “illegal sanctions. and inhumane. “

Negotiations that began in April have been on hold since the election of hardline cleric Raisi in June.

Raisi, under US personal sanctions for allegations of human rights abuses in his past as a judge, said Iran seeks “the lifting of all US sanctions and the neutralization of the sanctions,” with an uncompromising tone ahead of the Vienna discussions. .

“The negotiations we are considering are results-oriented. We will not leave the negotiating table … but we will not withdraw from the interests of our nation in any way,” Raisi was quoted as saying by Iranian state television.

Under the 2015 agreement between Iran and six world powers, Tehran halted its uranium enrichment program, a possible path to nuclear weapons, in exchange for the lifting of sanctions from the United States, the UN and the European Union.

US President Joe Biden meets with leaders of Britain, France and Germany to discuss Iran’s nuclear program (credit: REUTERS / KEVIN LAMARQUE)

But former US President Donald Trump resigned from the deal in 2018 and reimposed tough sanctions on Iran’s financial and oil sectors that have crippled its economy, prompting Tehran to violate the limits set by the pact on his nuclear work.

Despite six rounds of indirect talks, Tehran and Washington still disagree on what steps should be taken and when, the key issues being what nuclear limits Tehran will accept and what sanctions Washington will remove.

On the other hand, the commander-in-chief of the elite Revolutionary Guard, Hassan Salami, said that the US pressure on Iran had failed.

“The Americans have used all means, policies and strategies to surrender the Iranian nation … but the Islamic Republic has become stronger,” Salami said in a televised speech on the occasion of the siege of the US embassy in Tehran after the Islamic revolution of 1979.

There have been no diplomatic relations between the United States and Iran since the embassy seizure by radical students, who also held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days.

Live images on state television showed crowds across Iran attending state-organized demonstrations, chanting “Death to America” ​​and “Death to Israel.” Some burned American and Israeli flags.

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