Negotiators Obliged to Follow Instructions

Negotiators Obliged to Follow Instructions Negotiators Obliged to Follow Instructions

A senior nuclear negotiator noted that any decision regarding the red lines in the negotiations with the major powers over Tehran's nuclear program carries the approval of the Leader of the Islamic Revolution and the negotiators are bound to observe them.  

"The red lines in the talks are set under the supervision of the Leader," Abbas Araqchi said, adding, "The diplomats and negotiators are obliged to act based on the outlined instructions and red lines."

He made the remarks in an interview with state TV broadcast live on Monday.  

Under a prospective nuclear deal whose details are set to be worked out by a June 30 deadline, Iran would accept temporary restrictions on its nuclear program, including monitoring of its nuclear facilities by the UN nuclear watchdog, with international sanctions against the country being lifted in return.

"Generally, in every aspect of the talks, the negotiators only act as agents and they are not allowed to make decisions on their own," except in some limited cases, Araqchi was quoted by IRNA as saying.

The general red lines, laid down by the Leader, are then set out in detail by a council operating under President Hassan Rouhani's oversight and issued to the negotiating team, he stated. Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Araqchi, who had attended a closed session of the Majlis on Sunday to provide an update on the latest developments in the talks, came under heavy criticism by some lawmakers and other officials who accused the negotiating team of failing to observe the red lines in the talks by giving in to the demand by some international negotiating partners that Iran should allow the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) access to military sites for inspection. In response to the critics, Araqchi said late on Sunday the reports of the negotiators' agreeing to the demand, which some lawmakers had quoted him as announcing in parliament's session, were "absolutely untrue", saying, "In the Majlis meeting, Mr. Zarif and I reiterated our opposition to providing any access to our military centers for inspection and allowing meetings with our nuclear scientists for interview."    

The Leader had rejected the demand in his speech a week ago, saying inspection of military facilities was among the red lines of the Islamic Republic. "As we have said before, we will grant no access to any of our military centers and (allow) no interview with our nuclear scientists." Ayatollah Khamenei said.

 Red Lines May Change

In the televised interview, Araqchi pointed out that depending on the conditions in the talks, some red lines may change and the negotiating team may receive different instructions. Regarding the mechanism of providing managed access to the United Nations' inspectors, which is one of the main sticking points in the negotiations, Araqchi said, "This is a critical issue as it deals with national secrets."

He stressed that "inspection is ruled out as there is no mention of it in the terms of the Additional Protocol," adding, "At the discretion of authorities, there may be only managed access."

"We have no problem with the monitoring (of our nuclear program) by the IAEA. What has caused concern for us is that this monitoring might be subject to abuse" and risks exposing national secrets. "However, there are some ways to prevent such abuse," he noted, not elaborating any further.