Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that the country is ready to hold nuclear talks with the United States on the condition that they lift the sanctions. Rouhani, referring to his recent visit to New York, claimed that he was ready to have a meeting within an hour of the lifting of all sanctions but the US wanted to hold the meeting first and then lift sanctions.
"I hereby announce that whenever the United States is ready to lift all illegal and unjust sanctions, Iran and P5+1 leaders will meet right away, and we have no problem in this regard," said Rouhani.
Iran has been adamant on its demand to lift sanctions to return to nuclear talks with P5+1, the five permanent members of United Nations Security Council plus Germany. Rouhani compared Trump’s action to that of former US President Ronald Reagan’s towards the erstwhile Soviet Union and said, “but he didn't know that the Iranian nation, society, culture, young people, entrepreneurs and authorities defend their independence and dignity no matter what."
Rouhani blamed Israel and Saudi Arabia for influencing the US to exit the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA), commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal. “Saudi Arabia and the Zionist Regime were the key factors in influencing the US to withdraw from the JCPOA and mounting pressures against Iran," he said.
Though Iran has been facing further sanctions from the US after it announced the resumption of uranium enrichment activities in an underground lab in Fordow, many European countries, including France, Germany and Britain, have continued trade with the Middle East nation. They designed a barter mechanism, Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX), to bypass US sanctions by avoiding the trade in the American dollar. But they reiterated Iran’s obligations to fully comply with its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA), commonly known as Iran nuclear deal. Belgium, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden are latest to join the INSTEX.