Iran's Zarif tells Trump to drop "economic terrorism" before talks

Iran's Zarif tells Trump to drop

PanARMENIAN.Net - Iran will not be meeting with the administration of US President Donald Trump unless Washington stops its "economic terrorism" against the Iranian people, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Thursday, August 29, during his latest diplomatic swing through Asia, Al Jazeera reports.

"The United States is engaged in economic war against the Iranian people. It won't be possible for us to engage with US unless they stop imposing a war, engaging in economic terrorism," Zarif told reporters after speaking at the Institute of Strategic and International Studies in the Malaysian capital.

"If they want to come back to the room, there is a ticket, and that ticket is to observe the agreement," he said, referring to the 2015 nuclear deal signed by Iran and world powers.

Zarif said Iran does not want to "meet for the sake of meeting".

"The basic principle of civilised world is that you do not negotiate with terrorists," said Zarif.

"If they want to negotiate, they have to abandon terrorism."

There were hopes on Monday that Trump and his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, could break their political impasse following a surprise diplomatic manoeuvre by French President Emmanuel Macron at the G7 summit in Biarritz, France.

Macron invited Zarif to meet on the sidelines of the summit, in an effort to facilitate a meeting between Trump and Rouhani.

Speaking at a news conference at the end of the summit, Macron said that "a summit between President Rouhani and President Trump" was possible within weeks. France has taken on the role of mediator in hopes of saving the 2015 nuclear deal, which Trump unilaterally abandoned in 2018.

Under the deal, Iran had agreed to significantly curb its enrichment of uranium. In exchange, Tehran would be allowed to openly sell its oil in the world market.

Since Trump abandoned the deal, US sanctions have been reimposed against Iran.

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