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US talks not currently possible says Iran

by Staff Reporter
09 Feb 2013 at 06:38hrs | 2178 Views
Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Friday that talks with the United States is not currently possible.

"According to the guidelines of the (Iranian) supreme leader, negotiations with the United states is not in agenda and is not possible before they change their attitude and ask for apology for their... hostility toward the country," Mehmanparast was quoted as saying by official IRNA news agency Friday.

However, it is possible for Iran to enter negotiations with all of the countries except "the Zionist regime of Israel which Iran does not recognize," said Mehmanparast.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Thursday said the Islamic republic is not interested in any talks with the United States under pressure.

Khamenei's remarks came a day after Washington expanded the U.S. sanctions on Iran by tightening up economic measures against the Islamic republic and adding more names to its blacklist.

Talking to a group of military officials here on Thursday, Khamenei referred to the recent U.S. proposal of direct talks with the Islamic republic over the country's nuclear program, saying that "You (Americans) impose, as you call it, paralyzing sanctions to paralyze the Iranian nation. Is this a gesture of good-will or ill-will."

On Friday, the Iranian lawmaker Mansour Haqiqatpour said that the U.S. call for talks at the same time that Washington is imposing sanctions against the Iranian nation shows the lack of honesty in Washington's behavior, Press TV reported.

"In recent days, we have witnessed intensification of restrictive measures by the U.S. against Iran. On the one hand, they want to impose sanctions against Iran and, on the other hand, they say they are ready for negotiations. Such acts are completely unacceptable," said Haqiqatpour.

He went on by saying that U.S. talk of offer to the Islamic republic is an attempt to make up for its failures in the Middle East.

Also, Tehran's Interim Friday Prayers Leader, Ayatollah Mohammad-Ali Movahhedi-Kermani, said Friday that the United States is turning to negotiation with Iran due to its failure in Syria, according to Press TV.

Meanwhile, the spokesman for Iran's Majlis (Parliament) National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Seyyed Hossein Naqavi-Hosseini said Friday that U.S. words and actions do not correspond and it is only trying to deceive public opinion with the talks offer.

"The Americans want to show that they are willing to negotiate but in practice, they are following (the path of) threats, sanctions and pressure," he was quoted as saying by Press TV.

Following the Iranian officials' remarks over the dual approach of the United States towards the nuclear program of Iran, The United States on Thursday urged Iran to engage in "substantive" talks with the world powers later this month in return for eased sanctions.

"What's most important is that they come prepared to really engage on the substance," said State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland, adding that "The burden of these sanctions could be eased if they made a decision to engage with us substantively."

"We've always said that action on the Iranian side would be matched by action on our side, so it's really up to Iran to engage if it wants to see sanctions eased," she added.

Iran and the six powers held three rounds of talks last year but made no breakthrough.

Iran has agreed to start fresh talks with the so-called P5+1 group of Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States and Germany on Feb. 26 in Kazakhstan.

"We've been disappointed that those have not yet resulted in real, concrete progress," Nuland said, arguing that "So as long as Iran fails to address the concerns of the international community, we're going to have to continue to increase the pressure and isolate Iran internationally."

Also, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday that Moscow does not expect any major breakthrough to be made at a meeting between Iran and six major world powers over Tehran's controversial nuclear program scheduled for later this month.

"We have no overestimated expectations, but the very fact that a full-fledged meeting of the Sextet with Iran will happen is important," ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich told reporters in Moscow.

"The expectations are one thing but the results could be different," the Russian spokesman was quoted as saying by the Interfax news agency.

Iran insists on the peaceful nature of its nuclear program, while the West regards it as a cover for making nuclear weapons.

Source - Iran
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