EghtesadOnline: The option of dialogue between Iran and the United States should be weighed in light of their readiness to offer concessions because diplomacy is a matter of give-and-take, a political analyst said.
"There are many people who support negotiating with the US without preconditions and assume that a photo-op with [US President Donald] Trump or engaging in talks with the US can resolve the country's economic problems under the situation where the Americans have exhausted the sanctions options," Hadi Mohammadi also wrote in a recent article published by the Iranian Diplomacy website.
The analyst says readiness to give concessions makes dialogue possible so the option of holding talks with the US administration should be studied from a "realistic" viewpoint, without any "prejudice" and based on the fundamental principles of diplomacy, according to Financial Tribune.
"Imagine Iran declaring that it is ready to sit at the negotiation table with the US. What will be the agenda? What concessions should we made in return for the lifting of each set of sanctions?"
Mohammadi, who specializes in international relations, believes that Iran's bargaining chip at present is the steps it has taken so far in reducing its compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal.
In response to US sanctions imposed since Washington withdrew from the agreement in May last year and Europe's failure to shield the Iranian economy from the unilateral penalties, Iran has been surpassing the limits on its atomic activities in a phased manner.
It has so far exceeded the deal's limits on nuclear enrichment purity and stockpiles of enriched uranium as well as research and development, and has promised more cuts in its commitments unless Europe acts.
Tehran says its measures are "reversible".
Mohammadi maintains that Iran cannot gain many concessions, or have many sanctions lifted by agreeing to reverse these steps, considering the fact that it is under great pressure.
The analyst said another aspect of such talks concerns Iran's defense capabilities and regional influence.
“Regardless of whether it serves national interests or not, the principles of diplomacy state that it is not desirable to link negotiations, sanctions and an agreement on an issue—the nuclear program in this case—to another issue,” he said.
"So if the topics of negotiations are supposed to change, new and different concessions should be considered."
Mohammadi said talks under sanctions would only lead to Tehran offering concessions that would be to its detriment without getting anything significant in return and this would not help solve the country's economic issues, which is the main objective of a potential dialogue.
"That’s why our main demand before any talks is the lifting of sanctions so that meaningful talks could be held after a balance is created," he said, referring to the fact that Iranian officials have ruled out negotiations with the US until sanctions are lifted.