TEHRAN (Iran News) –Iran says “relative progress” has been made in the latest round of Vienna talks and that an agreement can be reached if Tehran’s red lines are met.
Speaking at a news conference on Monday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani reiterated Tehran’s long-standing position that it aims to reach a “sustainable and good agreement to remove the unjust sanctions imposed on Iran.”
He reported “relative progress” in the latest round of talks between Tehran and the P4+1 group of countries on restoring the deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), saying, however, that “Iran’s legitimate demands” have not yet been fully met.
Kanaani added that discussions are underway in Tehran and that “additional opinions” on the European Union’s proposals would be submitted.
Four days of Vienna talks between representatives of Iran and the five remaining parties to the JCPOA to salvage the deal culminated last Monday with a modified text on the table.
While the European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell claimed a “final text” had been reached, Iran emphasized it has conveyed its “initial response and reservations” on the draft text.
Kanaani said consultations are ongoing at the highest level in Tehran, adding, “We are close to an agreement, but it is conditioned on the consideration of Iran’s red lines and the ensuring of the country’s main interests.”
Commenting on the appointment of a new Kuwaiti ambassador to Iran after six years, Kanaani said “We are witnessing a serious development on the path towards the development of ties and cooperation between the two countries.”
He noted that Kuwait’s move could pave the way for further promotion of cooperation between Iran and its neighbors in the Persian Gulf.
Kuwait reduced diplomatic ties with Iran to the level of charges d’affaires in early January 2016.
Elsewhere, Kanaani also commented on some reports claiming a link between Iran and the attacker of Salman Rushdie, the author of a blasphemous anti-Islam book, saying “we categorically and officially deny this.”
“No one has the right to accuse the Islamic Republic of Iran,” he asserted.
The Iranian spokesman noted that Rushdie’s supporters are the ones who should be blamed for the attack.
For his part, Kanaani reasoned that Rushdie exposed himself to a “popular outrage” when he insulted Islamic sanctities and crossing the red lines of over 1.5 billion Muslims as well as the followers of divine religions.
Turning to the situation in Iraq, Kanaani stressed that the issues of Iraq are important to Iran and the country observes the developments in Iraq carefully and critically.
Stressing that Iran does not intervene in Iraq’s internal affairs, he cited, “In the light of positive and constructive communication with various political currents in Iraq, we are trying to help the political views of this country to come closer together.”
Inviting all Iraqi political currents to respect the constitution of this country as a national charter, Kanaani said that paying attention to national interests can bring stability back to Iraq.