Kerry Seeks Zarif's Trust

Kerry Seeks Zarif's Trust Kerry Seeks Zarif's Trust

US Secretary of State John Kerry's meeting with Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at the residence of Iran's Permanent Ambassador to the United Nations in New York, last Wednesday, was an effort "to gain Zarif's trust and change his mindset about the United States," says a member of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission.

The meeting was conducted on the sidelines of the ongoing 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which kicked off April 27 at the UN Headquarters in New York, and will last until May 22.

Referring to the venue of the meeting, residence of Tehran's permanent ambassador to the UN, Gholamali Khoshroo, Abbasali Mansouri Arani cited the meeting as 'meaningful', and said "the venue of political meetings convey a certain message in diplomatic relations."

"The fact that John Kerry chose to visit Zarif at the Islamic Republic's representative residence and office in the US, indicates that (the Americans) are seeking to change the mentality of the Iranian foreign minister and gain his trust," ICANA quoted  Mansouri Arani as saying.

The MP added that the meeting might convey "certain implications" given that the June deadline for finalizing a nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) is fast approaching.

During the Kerry-Zarif meeting, the two sides discussed how to proceed with the talks, sharing their concerns over the issues raised in the United State (on the final deal). "The US secretary of state reiterated that his country would adhere to its international commitments, regardless of its internal problems," IRNA quoted Zarif as saying.

A new round of nuclear negotiations aimed at writing the text of a final deal between Iran and the world powers started on Thursday with a meeting between deputy foreign ministers Abbas Araqchi and Majid Takht-Ravanchi and EU political director Helga Schmid in New York, on the sidelines of the 2015 Review Conference.

  Not All are at the Battlefield

Referring to a war of tweets between Zarif and the hardline US Republican Senator Tom Cotton, the senior lawmaker said during the Iran-Iraq war years, "Not everyone has to take a gun in his hand and go to the battlefield."

Mansouri Arani recommended the "young and inexperienced" senator to go home and take care of his newborn baby, IRNA reported.

He praised the Zarif's untiring efforts during the Iraqi-imposed war (1980-88), when he was serving at the United Nations. The efforts led to unanimous adaptation of the Resolution 598 by UN Security Council, which called for an immediate ceasefire between Iran and Iraq.

The tweeting began after Zarif said at New York University on Wednesday during his speech that if a nuclear deal is reached with Iran, sanctions would be lifted, "whether Senator Cotton likes it or not."

Cotton is said to be a strong opponent to the nuclear deal and spearheaded a controversial letter sent to Iranian leaders warning that any deal made with the Obama administration would swiftly be revoked when a new administration takes office in 2016.

Cotton took to Twitter on Wednesday to respond to Zarif’s comment, baiting him to participate in a debate on the US Constitution. Congratulating Cotton on the birth on Monday of his son, Gabriel, Zarif responded, "Serious diplomacy, not macho personal smear, is what we need."

The US senator had accused Zarif of "hiding in the US" during the Iraq-Iran military hostilities. Cotton seemingly had a short memory and forgot that the brutal Iraqi invasion was backed by the then US administration.