Zarif says no plan to meet US counterpart

Zarif says no plan to meet US counterpart

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said he has no plan to meet US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Singapore, where a ministerial meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is being held.

AhlulBayt News Agency (ABNA): Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said he has no plan to meet US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Singapore, where a ministerial meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is being held.

Speaking to reporters in Singapore on Thursday, Zarif ruled out any plan for a meeting with the US state secretary on the sidelines of the ASEAN conference.

Zarif has met several foreign diplomats and officials during his trip to Singapore.

Dismissing speculation about a meeting with Pompeo, Zarif said Iranian and American officials had a lot of meetings in the course of nuclear talks for more than two years that led to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), noting that the incumbent US administration does not honor its commitments.

“Meeting for (another) meeting does not make sense, and Americans should prove that the meetings will result in an agreement and that those agreements are honored,” he added.

Highlighting the international mistrust of the US, Zarif said Washington has become addicted to sanctions.

Slamming the US move to impose sanctions on two ministers of Turkey -a NATO ally of the US- as an interference in Turkish internal affairs, Zarif said it reveals that Washington has no bounds for its illegal policies and addiction to imposing sanctions.

The White House has said the US Treasury Department will impose sanctions on Turkey's minister of justice and minister of interior over detention of an American pastor who is being tried in Turkey on espionage and terror-related charges.

Elsewhere in his comments, Zarif touched on an imminent round of new American sanctions on Iran, saying a set of countries in all continents are prepared to find ways to counter those US sanctions and exercise innovation to pursue their policies.

Pointing to his meetings with foreign authorities on the sidelines of the ASEAN meeting in Singapore, Zarif said all officials have stressed the need to maintain the JCPOA and expand ties with Iran.

“The whole countries with whose officials I met and spoke have emphasized on protecting their independence from the US policies on the JCPOA and maintaining it as a diplomatic achievement,” he noted.

In Singapore, Zarif had separate meetings with the Southeast Asian nation’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and with his counterparts from Russia, Japan, Turkey, the Philippines, Malaysia and Vietnam.

On May 8, US President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the JCPOA, which was achieved in 2015 after years of negotiations among Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany).

Following the US exit, Iran and the remaining parties launched talks to save the accord.



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