Tehran to Continue Diplomatic Efforts to Secure Sanctions Lifting

The foreign ministry has various efforts on its agenda for the conclusion of the nuclear talks held so far, Iran’s top diplomat said
Tehran to Continue Diplomatic  Efforts to Secure Sanctions Lifting
Tehran to Continue Diplomatic  Efforts to Secure Sanctions Lifting

Iran’s top diplomat said the foreign ministry will continue to perform its duty for the lifting of sanctions through the the course of negotiations and diplomacy and while adhering to the Islamic Republic’s red lines. 
“We have various efforts on our agenda for the conclusion of the talks held so far,” Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said at a conference on Thursday, ISNA reported. 
He made the remarks in reference to negotiations that aim to revive the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. 
The JCPOA lifted sanctions on Iran in return for curbs on its nuclear program, but the United States withdrew in 2018 and reimposed tough sanctions that prompted Tehran to react by scaling down its commitments. 
Indirect talks began in early 2021 in Vienna to work out how both sides could resume compliance, but have been stalled for nearly a year over final differences. 
Amir-Abdollahian said, however, that the indirect exchange of messages between Iran and the other negotiating sides is ongoing.
“Simultaneously, efforts are being made by foreign ministers of certain states to prepare the ground for the finalization of the talks,” he said, without naming any country.   
There has been good progress in the process, he said, hoping the negotiations would reach a clear result so it can be publicized. 
Amir-Abdollahian said although some groups say that the nuclear deal is ended or no longer functional, Iran believes it is the only option available.  
“We believe that it is the JCPOA—whether good or bad or having strengths and weaknesses—that is before us today as an international document for the lifting of sanctions,” he said.   
Pointing to the effects of sanctions on people’s livelihoods, he said the foreign ministry is determined to use all its capacities to resolve those problems. 
“Unfortunately, imposing unilateral and illegal sanctions by the US and some other countries have become a trump card for them, so to neutralize the sanctions, we have diplomacy and negotiation on the agenda along with other efforts,” he said. 
US officials, however, have been saying in recent months that the talks are no longer on top of their agenda. 
In the most recent remarks, a US State Department spokesman said Washington continues to believe that diplomacy is the best way to reach a solution with Iran, but added that “we have seen no progress in terms of actions from the Iranian government in the region.”
This is while Iran has maintained that its regional activities cannot be an issue of discussion in the nuclear talks. 


Inclusive Gov’t 

The foreign minister also pointed to the recent friction with Afghanistan’s Taliban-led government over Iran’s water rights of Hirmand River. 
“We have told the authorities in Afghanistan that the issue of water rights will not be resolved by political statements and must be pursued through legal frameworks,” he said. 
He also expressed concern about conflicts across Iran-Afghanistan borders over the past months. 
Underlining the two countries’ neighborliness and sharing of long borders, he stressed that “there is no way but interaction between the two countries.” 
“We want to help the process of promoting peace and security in Afghanistan and have mutual expectations,” he said, adding that Iran does not want another bitter incident like the killing of Iranian diplomats to happen once again. 
In the siege of the Iranian consulate in the city of Mazar Sharif during the Taliban battles in 1998, 10 Iranian diplomats and a journalist were killed.
Amir-Abdollahian said Iran is unhappy that an inclusive government has not been formed in Afghanistan and has declared that to its de-facto rulers. 
“We don’t recognize the current ruling party in Afghanistan and emphasize that an inclusive government has to be formed,” he said, adding that the Taliban is part of the reality of Afghanistan, not its whole. 
The top diplomat also voiced dismay about denying Afghan women and girls the right to education, saying this is against the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). 
The Taliban were toppled from power by the US invasion in 2001, but took over the country again following the irresponsible exit of coalition forces in 2021. 

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