Zou Zhiqiang: Iran Rules out Negotiations with US, Low Possibility Seen for Talks Due to Each Side's Preconditions
Publish time: 2018-08-15 Browsing times: 10

MESI Associate Researcher Zou Zhiqiang receiveds an interview of China Daily on Iranian situation on August 15, 2018. The full text is as follows:

Iran Rules out Negotiations with US

Low Possibility Seen for Talks Due to Each Side's Preconditions

Preconditions from Iran and the United States make it unlikely the two countries will return to the negotiation table, said Chinese experts, after Teheran reiterated its firmness in not talking with Washington.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday that Teheran will never enter a new round of talks with the US over the 2015 nuclear deal as Washington is bullying and cheating in negotiations.

Over the past 40 years, Americans have requested for negotiations for many times, but only met with Iran's negative answers, he was quoted as saying by Press TV.

During negotiations, Americans only give promises using apparently assuring words, but want real concessions from the opposite side and do not accept promises, he said.

Gao Shangtao, professor at China Foreign Affairs University, said there is a very low possibility of talks between Iran and the US since neither agrees with the other's preconditions.

The US withdrawing from the 2015 agreement and asking Iran to form a new one that benefits itself, he said, is unacceptable to Iran.

On the other hand, Iran said the negotiation can only be conducted under the frame of the 2015 deal, which is not in line with US interests.

Khamenei said: We can only embark on negotiating with the United States after we reach the economic, political and cultural power that we have in mind, so that the US pressures and ballyhoo would not be able to affect us.

Zou Zhiqiang, a researcher from Shanghai International Studies University, said Iran's choice to act tough when facing the high degree of hostility and pressure from the US has been made under consideration of the imbalance between the two powers.

Iran believes the US will not really start a war and morality is on its side, he said. Considering its choice is very limited, the sanctions are imminent, and any substantial counterattack will be promoted as a threat by the US, Iran, instead, chose to take a tough stance without any compromise and negotiation.

Gao said Iran is not afraid of a US threat and is confident to fight against Washington.

He said Teheran has now systematically responded to US sanctions, including strengthening domestic currency exchange trade with Turkey, China and Russia, as well as signing oil production sales agreements and high-tech product import agreements with countries that have trade friction with the US. So the US sanctions may not achieve the desired results.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said last week that a recent proposal by US President Donald Trump to enter into negotiations with Iran over the nuclear issue is nothing but a publicity stunt.

Khamenei also said early this month that any negotiation with the US to solve the existing problems is an obvious mistake, in response to Trump's proposal for a one-to-one talk with Iranian leaders with no preconditions.

Last Tuesday, the US imposed new sanctions on Iran, vowing to impose maximum economic pressure on Teheran. A second batch of US sanctions targeting Iran's oil sector and central bank will be reimposed in early November.

Experts have said the US may not easily give up negotiation attempts with Iran and the relationship between the two countries will continue to be tense.

Source: China Daily