Rouhani says Iran ready for talks if US lifts sanctions, returns to nuclear deal

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Iran is ready to hold talks with the United States if Washington lifts sanctions and returns to the 2015 nuclear deal it exited last year, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech on Sunday.

“We have always believed in talks ... if they lift sanctions, end the imposed economic pressure and return to the deal, we are ready to hold talks with America today, right now and anywhere,” Rouhani said.

Tension has heightened between the longtime foes since US President Donald Trump last year withdrew from the nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers and reimposed sanctions on Tehran that had been lifted under the pact.

On May 8 last year, US President Donald Trump signed a document reinstating sanctions against Iran after announcing the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal due to Iran’s continued support for terrorists and foreign proxy groups. The sanctions hit vital parts of Iran’s economy, including oil exports, shipping and banking.

Most recently, new sanctions were imposed on Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and eight commanders of the IRGC on June 24, in response to the shooting down of a US drone on June 20.

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