EghteadOnline: It is evident that Iran has no intention to enter into negotiation with the United States, according to a top security official who described such claims by the Americans as a “lie”.
“The US is unfaithful and unreliable, so negotiation makes no sense,” Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Supreme National Security Council, said on the sidelines of an international security seminar on Monday.
His comments followed US President Donald Trump's claim in a recent talk that Iran is under serious pressure and intends to open a dialogue.
“Iran is doing very poorly … They’re not doing well. They want to talk,” he told a group of reporters in Washington on Sunday, Financial Tribune reported.
Shamkhani also said that during his recent trip to Afghanistan, two American representatives approached him to express the US willingness to talk, but were rejected.
“They lie about Iran’s call for negotiation,” he was quoted as saying by ISNA.
Trump’s remarks also drew the reaction of Iran's Foreign Ministry. Bahram Qasemi, the ministry’s spokesman, said on Monday Trump is only expressing his “futile and impossible dreams”.
“He knows that Iran has been facing US pressure and sanctions for decades and is familiar with them … The Iranian nation will never give in to the US oppressive pressure … [They] have learnt to withstand oppressors,” he said.
About a year after he took office as president, Trump scrapped the 2015 nuclear agreement signed between Iran and major world powers under the previous US administration, calling it “defective at its core”.
Under the deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, Iran agreed to place curbs on its nuclear program in return for relief from international sanctions.
Trump, however, argued that it did not cover Iran’s nuclear activity beyond 2025, its missile program and regional policies. He reimposed sanctions to force Iranian leaders to come to the negotiating table once again for a new agreement.
Iran has refused to engage in new talks, maintaining that the US needs to fulfill its earlier commitments before offering a new round of negotiations.
“Any talks should be within the framework and in continuation of JCPOA and [United Nations] Security Council Resolution 2231 [which endorses the JCPOA], and not in a framework that breaches them and reverts to the past,” President Hassan Rouhani said during his speech at the UN General Assembly last September.
No Boots on the Ground
In his comments, Trump also pointed to the alleged retreat of Iranian forces from the region as a result of the US tough line.
“Once I took the horrible Iran nuclear deal off, it’s had a massive effect on Iran. They’re pulling back troops all over the place,” he said.
Shamkhani rejected the statement, noting that Iran has no forces across the region to withdraw.
“Our forces were military advisors who offered counseling and the regional nations in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Yemen defended their countries themselves,” he said.
The Iranian official was speaking on the sidelines of the International Conference on Defense and Security in West Asia in Tehran on Monday.
The international seminar was held in cooperation with Iran’s Supreme National Defense University and the Defense Diplomacy Strategic Studies Center.
During the daylong event, political, defense and security officials from Asian and European countries expressed their views about regional security, terrorism, extremism and the adverse consequences of foreign interference in the internal affairs of regional countries, Press TV reported.
The discussions were held in specialized panels, focusing on ways to manage regional crises by putting an end to US and Israeli interference in the region, prevent arms sales among regional countries, preclude the emergence of a new generation of violent dictators in the region and avert its adverse effects on talks aimed at restoring peace to the region.
The participants also exchanged views on ways to fight extremist groups and their allies, combat security threats emanating from the spread of extremist ideologies in the region and the world, and promote the role of diplomacy in settling regional woes.