24 Jul 2024
Amid talks with the US in Switzerland, a senior Iranian nuclear negotiator has said that the US will lose out to ďEuropean rivalsĒ in Iranís economic boom after a deal and lifting of US-led sanctions.

No news came out of Sundayís meeting between Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and US Secretary of State John Kerry. Sanctions, which have crippled Iranís economy, are the most significant issue blocking a resolution by a formal deadline of July 1 and an informal deadline of March 31 set by the Americans.

Instead,Majid Takht-Ravanchi issued a proclamationthat foreign investment will return to the Islamic Republic after an agreement:
However, it is only the Americans that will be left out of the Iranian market due to the sanctions that they have imposed in the past.

We believe that this is their own problem and we have no inclination that they change their laws. The fact of the matter is that they cannot enter the Iranian market due to the laws that they, themselves, have devised.
Takht-Ravanchi repeated that all sanctions must be lifted quickly for a deal to be reached:
Iran faces different forms of sanctions and have already communicated to the 5+1 Powers [US, Britain, France, Germany, China, and Russia] that all sanctions should be lifted. We believe that all those sanctions Ė including those imposed through [President Obama's] executive orders and those devised by the Congress Ė should be lifted.
Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif is scheduled to travel to Brussels on Monday to meet British, German, and French counterparts.

First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri said on Sunday thata settlement is likelyif pressure from ďZionistsĒ, Arab States, and US hardliners is resisted:
At present, settlement of issues needs political will. There are still differences over the method of removing the sanctions.

We think that if the Americans refrain from being influenced and pressured by the Zionists, certain countries, and radicals, all grounds will be prepared for a comprehensive and complete agreement and we have almost arrived at that pointÖ.

At present, we think that we have reached very good points in the negotiations, and we can say we have attained good agreements in most, if not all, technical areas.

Another Blow for Former President Rafsanjani: Son Given 15-Year Prison Sentence
Less than a week after his attempt to head the Assembly of Experts was rebuffed, former President Hashemi Rafsanjani has been dealt another blow by his opponents with a lengthy prison sentence for his son.

Years of legal maneuvering culminated on Sunday with theterm for Mehdi Hashemi, according to Iranian media. One report said the sentence was 15 years;another said it was seven.

Iran Prosecutor General Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei reportedly said that Hashemiís sentence was related to ďnational security mattersĒ as well as fraud and embezzlement. He said he would not give details ó including the length ó until an appeals process was concluded.

Hashemi has 20 days to challenge the sentence.

Hashemi left Iran for Britain soon after Iranís disputed presidential election in 2009 and his fatherís support of the right to mass protest. He was soon accused of financial crimes and electoral interference.

Hashemi finally returned to Tehran in September 2012. He was bailed three months later while proceedings ó and pressure on his father ó continued.

After years of eclipse after the disputes of 2009, Rafsanjani has enjoyed a political resurgence with the election of his protťgť Hassan Rouhani as President. However, hardliners have continued to accuse him of ďseditionĒ while blocking the Rouhani Governmentís political and cultural initiatives.

Last Tuesday, Rafsanjani suffered a heavy defeat when he lost the election to head the Assembly of Experts, which names the Supreme Leader and has the nominal power to remove him.

By EA WorldView
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