Tag Archives: Iran&#39s

Iran's Foreign Minister Zarif: We Can't "Discount" Possibility of War

Iran's Foreign Minister Zarif: We Can't "Discount" Possibility of WarOn Thursday, National Interest Editor Jacob Heilbrunn interviewed Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif in New York at the Ambassador’s residence on the current state of U.S.-Iran relations. The transcript has been lightly edited for readability.Jacob Heilbrunn: With the American shooting down of an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz today, are we on a path of escalation?Mohammed Javad Zarif: I checked with Tehran, and we do not have any information about having lost a drone today. So, we don’t know, as of now what has happened. We have the president saying that they shot a drone. We don’t know whose drone it is, but we don’t have that information. But we are certainly moving in the wrong direction. The fact that the United States has an increased presence in the Persian Gulf doesn’t help security or stability in the area—it’s a tiny body of water and you cannot have such congested traffic there without something happening.Heilbrunn: A lot of the tension is also focused on the tanker that went missing. Is Iran responsible for that?Zarif: All the information we have is that we confiscated a small tanker that was only carrying a million liters of smuggled oil products—not oil—and that happens quite often in the Persian Gulf because of heavily subsidized prices in Iran of oil products. There is a lot of smuggling from both sea and land borders and we interdict them on a regular basis. So if that is the tanker they’re talking about, that is a smuggling tanker, not a shipping tanker.Heilbrunn: Another move that the Trump administration has announced is sending about five hundred more soldiers to Saudi Arabia. What is your response to that?



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Iran's top diplomat walks back from remark on missile talks

Iran's top diplomat walks back from remark on missile talksIran’s foreign minister said Wednesday that his country has no choice but to manufacture missiles for defense purposes — comments that reflect more backtracking after a remark by the top diplomat suggesting the missiles could be up for negotiations. Iran has long rejected negotiations over its ballistic missile program, which remains under the control of the Iranian paramilitary Revolutionary Guard that answers only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The foreign minister’s remarks suggested a possible opening for talks as tensions remain high between Tehran and Washington.



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Iran's top diplomat warns US is 'playing with fire'

Iran's top diplomat warns US is 'playing with fire'Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif warned Monday that the United States is "playing with fire," echoing remarks by President Donald Trump as the two sides are locked in a standoff over Tehran's nuclear program. The United States quit an international deal aimed at curbing Iran's nuclear program last year, hitting Tehran with crippling sanctions.



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U.S. grants visa to Iran's Zarif for U.N. meeting this week: sources

U.S. grants visa to Iran's Zarif for U.N. meeting this week: sourcesThe United States has granted a visa to Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to attend a U.N. meeting in New York this week, two sources familiar with the matter said on Sunday, saying Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had approved the decision. Had Pompeo not approved giving a visa to Zarif, Iran’s top diplomat and nuclear negotiator, it could have been a signal that the United States was trying to further isolate the Islamic Republic and perhaps closing the door to diplomacy. U.S.-Iranian tensions have worsened since U.S. President Donald Trump decided last year to abandon the 2015 nuclear deal under which Iran agreed to curtail its atomic program in return for relief from economic sanctions crippling its economy.



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Iran's Military Vows Retaliation for U.K. Seizing Oil Tanker

Iran's Military Vows Retaliation for U.K. Seizing Oil Tanker(Bloomberg) — Iran’s military vowed to retaliate against the seizure by British Royal Marines of an oil tanker loaded with the Islamic Republic’s crude off the coast of Gibraltar last week.“It will be reciprocated, at a suitable time and in a suitable place,” Mohammad Bagheri, the chief of staff for Iran’s armed forces, was quoted as saying by the official Islamic Republic News Agency.The warning highlights mounting risks to shipping in a region that exports about a third of all seaborne petroleum. BP Plc is keeping an oil carrier empty inside the Persian Gulf, close to Saudi Arabia, rather than risk its seizure by Iran, a person familiar with the matter said Monday. Six tankers have been attacked since early May, with the U.S. blaming Iran for the incidents, a charge Tehran denies.The tanker seized by Gibraltar with the help of Royal Marines — the Grace 1 — was arrested on the grounds it was taking crude to a sanctioned Syrian company, according to the British overseas territory on Spain’s southern tip. Iran said the tanker was in international waters, not headed to Syria, and described the U.K.’s actions as piracy.Insurance costs soared in the aftermath of the tanker attacks and some owners initially became wary of sailing to the region.Tensions escalated since the U.S. exited an international nuclear accord with Iran then resumed — and escalated — sanctions against nation. The Persian Gulf country has responded by suspending some of its commitments as part of the accord not to develop nuclear activities that it says are for are civilian purposes.(Updates with context about BP oil tanker in third paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Ladane Nasseri in Dubai at lnasseri@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Alaa Shahine at asalha@bloomberg.net, Alaric Nightingale, Brian WingfieldFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



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Iran's Zarif calls on UK to immediately release captured oil tanker

Iran's Zarif calls on UK to immediately release captured oil tankerThe capture of an Iranian oil tanker by Britain has set “a dangerous precedent and must end now”, Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter on Monday. “Iran is neither a member of the EU nor subject to any European oil embargo. UK’s unlawful seizure of a tanker with Iranian oil on behalf of #B_Team is piracy, pure and simple.



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Iran's Zarif calls on UK to immediately release captured oil tanker

Iran's Zarif calls on UK to immediately release captured oil tankerThe capture of an Iranian oil tanker by Britain has set “a dangerous precedent and must end now”, Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter on Monday. “Iran is neither a member of the EU nor subject to any European oil embargo. UK’s unlawful seizure of a tanker with Iranian oil on behalf of #B_Team is piracy, pure and simple.



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Oil Minister Zanganeh says hopeful Iran's oil exports will improve: TV

Oil Minister Zanganeh says hopeful Iran's oil exports will improve: TVIran’s Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh said on Sunday that he was very hopeful of an improvement in the country’s crude exports, state TV reported, in spite of tightened U.S. sanctions on Tehran’s main source of income. “I am very hopeful that our oil exports will improve,” Zanganeh told state TV, adding that the price of oil was not Iran’s main concern. “What matters now for Iran is the amount of oil that we can export,” Zanganeh said.



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Iran's Zarif says there won't be a better nuclear deal than 2015 accord

Iran's Zarif says there won't be a better nuclear deal than 2015 accordWorld powers will not be able to negotiate a better deal with Iran than the landmark 2015 nuclear deal, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted on Monday. Iran threatened on Monday to restart deactivated centrifuges and ramp up its enrichment of uranium to 20 percent purity as its next potential big moves away from the agreement that Washington abandoned last year. “#B_Team sold @realDonaldTrump on the folly that killing #JCPOA thru #EconomicTerrorism can get him a better deal,” Zarif wrote, referring to the nuclear deal by its acronym, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).



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Drone shootdown highlights history of U.S. incursions into Iran's airspace

Drone shootdown highlights history of U.S. incursions into Iran's airspaceThe U.S. military drone Iran shot down near the Persian Gulf June 20 likely didn’t stray into Iranian airspace, as the Iranians claimed it had, according to several former senior officials. But had it done so, it would not have been the first U.S. drone to fly into Iran, according to two of those officials.



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