UPDATED 8:11 AM PT – Wednesday, April 21, 2021
The Biden administration said negotiations with Iran have been “positive” even as the Islamic Republic inches ever closer to acquiring a nuclear weapon. This was the assessment shared with reporters by State Department spokesman Ned Price during a Tuesday press briefing.
Yet, even as the Biden State Department was declaring its confidence in the progress of talks, Iranian officials stated they would consider walking away from negotiations altogether. They warned this would be the case unless the U.S. agreed to unilaterally remove the entirety of Trump-era sanctions on the Islamic Republic.
“We think that if the United States decides to distance from (Donald) Trump’s failed legacy and to live up to its commitments, the consultations will advance easily,” stated Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman for the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
He can stick with Obama’s deal. Or he can cling to Trump’s sanctions, incl those anti-JCPOA designations with faux labels.
— Saeed Khatibzadeh (@SKhatibzadeh) April 10, 2021
Many critics of the plan suggest returning to the accords could weaken America’s position in the Middle East and allow Iran to get closer to achieving nuclear weapons.