U.S. Slams Iran For Trying To Deflect Blame For Nuke Talks Impasse
The United States over the weekend accused Tehran of an "outrageous" effort to deflect blame for the impasse in Iran nuclear talks and denied that any agreement had been reached on a prisoner swap.
Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, Abbas Araqchi, said earlier on Twitter that the next round of negotiations in Vienna must wait until the new Iranian administration takes office in August but insisted that a prisoner exchange could take place quickly if the United States and Britain would stop linking it with the nuclear issue, Nayera Abdallah and Arshad Mohammed reported for Reuters.
Indirect US-Iranian talks on reviving the 2015 deal have been on hold since the last round ended on June 20, and Araqchi's comments confirmed that Tehran will not return to the table before President-elect Ebrahim Raisi takes over.
"We're in a transition period as a democratic transfer of power is underway in our capital. Vienna talks must thus obviously await our new administration,” he tweeted.
US State Department spokesman Ned Price said: "These comments are an outrageous effort to deflect blame for the current impasse." He added that “we stand ready to return to Vienna to complete work on a mutual return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) once Iran has made the necessary decisions.” JCPOA was abandoned by defeated former President Donald Trump.