Introduction — August 1, 2018
Underlining Iran’s contention that Donald Trump is not a man to keep his word, the U.S. president announced on Monday night that he was ready to meet Iranian President Rouhani “without preconditions“.
However, early the next day U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo revised that offer. With Pompeo stipulating that Iran needed to make:
“fundamental changes to how they treat their own people, reduce their malign behavior, agree that it’s worthwhile to enter into a nuclear agreement that actually prevents proliferation.”
In other words the U.S. had made an offer and less than 24 hours later had gone back on its word. After Trump had apparently offered unconditional talks the U.S. secretary of state began adding preconditions.
Given that President Trump has pulled-out of a previously agreed nuclear deal with Tehran, is it any wonder that Iran believes that the U.S. cannot be trusted? Ed.
Iranian interior minister says Trump is not trustworthy enough for talks: Fars news
Reuters — July 31, 2018
Iran does not trust the United States as a negotiating partner, the interior minister in Tehran said on Tuesday, a day after President Donald Trump offered to meet his Iranian counterpart for talks without preconditions.
“The United States is not trustworthy. How can we trust this country when it withdraws unilaterally from the nuclear deal?” Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli was quoted as saying by the semi-official Fars news agency.
Iranian officials reacted skeptically earlier on Tuesday to Trump’s comments that he’s willing to negotiate with his Iranian counterpart, saying instead that if Trump wants talks, he needs to rejoin the international nuclear deal he unilaterally pulled out of earlier this year.
Trump on Monday said he’d meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani “anytime” if the Iranian leader were willing.
In his first public remarks after the comment, Rouhani did not mention Trump at all but instead stressed the need for the other nations involved in the nuclear deal to forge ahead with their pledges of trying to salvage it.
“Today we are at a very critical point in history regarding the nuclear deal, and Europe’s transparent measures to compensate for the United States’ unlawful withdrawal from it are very important for the Iranian nation,” Rouhani said after talks with new British Ambassador Rob Macaire.
The Iranian leadership has previously ruled out one-on-one talks with Trump, following his decision to pull the United States out of the deal under which Iran was given relief from sanctions in return for curbs on its nuclear program.
Iran’s semi-official ISNA news agency quoted political adviser Hamid Aboutalebi as saying that for talks to happen, the U.S. needs to rejoin the deal.
“Those who believe in dialogue as a method of resolving disputes in civilized societies should be committed to the means,” he said.
Trump withdrew from the landmark nuclear accord in May, saying it was too generous to Iran. He has vowed to ramp up sanctions until Iran radically changes its regional policies, including its support for regional militant groups, something the country’s leaders have long refused to do.