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Iran's Khamenei: 'Negotiations with US useless'

In this picture released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei attends a ceremony in a military academy, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, June 30, 2018.
Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP

Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Saturday that negotiations with the United States are "useless" because it does not abide by agreements.

"As I have previously said, we cannot trust in the words of the United States and even in their signature, so negotiations with the United States are useless," Khamenei told a gathering of Iranian diplomats in Tehran.

"The idea that problems can be resolved through negotiations or relations with the United States is a major error," he added.

President Trump announced in May the US’ withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal and reimposing of sanctions on Iran, causing a number of companies around the world to cancel their contracts with the Islamic Republic.

Since then, Iran has negotiated with the remaining signatories to the deal in an attempt to save it.

"Negotiations with the Europeans must continue, but we must not wait for their offer indefinitely," said Khamenei.

ROBERT JAEGER (APA/AFP)

Following Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo listed 12 demands to Iran that should be met in order for the US to engage in new negotiations.

Among the demands were that Iran must stop enrichment and never pursue plutonium reprocessing, as well as halt its activities across the Middle East which the US sees as destabilizing.

"The US seeks the return of the situation and their status before the (1979 Islamic) revolution in Iran. They are against the nuclear potential and the power of its (Iran's) enrichment, and its presence in the region," Khamenei said on Saturday.

The US has openly said that it seeks to target the Iranian government and not the people.

Brian Hook, who is leading negotiations with US allies on a new Iran strategy, said earlier this month that sanctions on Iran will snap back as soon as August 4 and they will include targeting the Islamic Republic’s automobile sector, trade in gold and other “key metals.”

“Our sanctions do not now, nor have they ever, targeted humanitarian goods. Our sanctions pressure the Iranian regime into changing its behavior and they do not target the Iranian people. The United States does not sanction the export of food or medicine to Iran,” Hook said.

“The average Iranian today is struggling to afford basics like water, bread, and eggs. At the same time, the Iranian regime is squandering millions of dollars on violent misadventures abroad. These serve no purpose other than to prolong pain and suffering of men, women, and children in Iran and elsewhere in the Middle East,” he added.

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