FM’s Plans at UN Outlined

FM’s Plans at UN Outlined
FM’s Plans at UN Outlined

Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian is set to leave Tehran on Monday to attend the United Nations General Assembly in New York where he will also hold meetings with foreign diplomats and senior officials from international organizations.  
Around 45 meetings have been arranged for the foreign minister during his stay, including with top diplomats from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, according to Foreign Ministry Spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh. 
He will also meet heads of international bodies, including the UN secretary-general and Security Council president, as well as all those who had a request to meet, the spokesman added.  
“It has been arranged that all the meetings take place during this short few-day trip,” he was quoted as saying by IRNA. 
However, no decision has yet been made for Amir-Abdollahian’s participation in the scheduled ministerial meeting of the 4+1 countries (France, Britain, China and Russia, plus Germany), he said.
“We must see the agenda and topic of the meeting and decide based on that.” 
He said Iran would naturally join the 4+1 session if it is seen as potentially helpful for the progress of the Vienna negotiations. 
The five countries are members of Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal that originally lifted sanctions on Tehran in return for restrictions on its nuclear program. 
The United States was also a party before it exited unilaterally in 2018 and reimposed its sanctions, prompting Iranian leaders to suspend adherence to the terms of the agreement and step beyond its limits in response.    
Fresh negotiations started in April in Vienna, Austria, to work out how both sides can agree to resume full compliance with the deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. 
“What is important is that the foreign minister will have separate bilateral meetings with all ministers of the 4+1,” Khatibzadeh said.  
Amir-Abdollahian will represent the country at the UNGA while President Ebrahim Raeisi stays home due to health risks amid the spread of the coronavirus disease.
He will, however, address the assembly virtually like leaders of many other countries, according to the spokesman.



Different Approach 

The Vienna talks have been halted since the Iranian presidential elections in June which brought a more conservative government to power.
Iran is yet to decide on the composition of its negotiating delegation which was led by former deputy foreign minister Abbas Araqchi under the previous administration. 
“This is under review at the moment. Changes will naturally take place but has not yet been finalized,” Khatibzadeh said. 
Iran blames Washington for disrupting the process of talks by sticking with its stubborn stance and refusing to lift its sanctions unconditionally. 
They reportedly insist on adding terms to the JCPOA which Iran has categorically rejected. 
Khatibzadeh said the US is the main culprit of the current situation, criticizing it for continuing to exert unilateral and cruel pressure against the Iranian nation.  
“If the US leaves aside this unilateralism in practice, the Vienna talks will take a better course,” he said. 
He added that the JCPOA will return to its original shape once the US abandons this approach and Iran verifies its reliability. 
“We do not make any commitment to accept interests less than what has been outlined in the JCPOA and the US must come to Vienna with a different approach,” he said. 

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