Set Aside Illusions on Iran N. Program, Zarif Tells West
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called on Western governments to set aside illusions that sanctions forced the Islamic Republic to negotiate on its nuclear energy program.
In an interview with Press TV in Munich on Friday, Zarif said the illusions, spread mainly by the United States, hinder talks on Iran’s nuclear energy program, Press TV reported.
“There is (an)…illusion that the sanctions have produced the results of the negotiations. I think these illusions should be set aside,” the Iranian foreign minister said.
“I think the illusions that some Western countries, particularly the United States, had in the beginning that they could dismantle Iran’s peaceful nuclear program, have brought us to this stage, where basically for eight years we were not able to reach an agreement,” Zarif stated.
He added that the Western governments must accept the reality that “Iran is coming to the negotiating table in order to show that its nuclear program is exclusively peaceful and in order to remove a source of concern for our region and the international community.”
The Iranian foreign minister stated that “a new type of relations” will take shape between Iran and the West if the Western countries “come to the negotiating table with an intention to reach an agreement.”
Zarif’s remarks were in response to US President Barack Obama who said in his State of the Union address on January 28 that the anti-Iran sanctions brought Tehran to the negotiating table with the six world powers.
Iran and the Sextet of world powers – the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany – inked an interim deal on Iran’s nuclear energy program in Geneva, Switzerland, last November.
Under Geneva nuclear deal, Iran as a confidence-building measure agreed to limit certain aspects of its nuclear activities and the world powers undertook to provide Iran with some sanctions relief and release more than USD 4 billion of Tehran’s frozen assets.