Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard has warned the country’s diplomats over diplomatically engaging with the United States, according to a statement at the weekend.
The warning comes ahead of expected diplomatic contacts between both countries.
U.S. President Barack Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rowhani will both be in New York next week to attend the United Nations’ General Assembly. The White House has said that an encounter between the two leaders is possible, although there was no meeting scheduled.
“Historical experiences make it necessary for the diplomatic apparatus of our country to carefully and skeptically monitor the behavior of White House officials so that the righteous demands of our nation are recognized and respected by those who favor interaction,” a statement from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) said, published by Iran’s Tasnim news agency on Saturday.
The statement added IRGC would support initiatives that were in line with national interests and strategies set forth by Iran’s theocratic leader and highest authority, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
The U.S. is ready to engage in talks with Iran based on mutual respect over its disputed nuclear program, as long as Tehran demonstrates that its program is for civilian purposes, the White House said on Friday.
“We have had a number of engagements with the Iranians and we’ll continue to have conversations on the basis of mutual respect,” Reuters news agency quoted Josh Earnest, the deputy White House spokesman, as saying.
“And over the course of those conversations there will be an opportunity for the Iranians to demonstrate through actions the seriousness with which they are pursuing this endeavor,” Earnest said.
On Friday, Rowhani wrote in a column published by the Washington Post that the Islamic Republic is committed to helping overcome its common challenges with the West through dialogue.
Early this week, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei called for “heroic leniency" with the West.