Antony Blinken
Antony BlinkenREUTERS/Sarah Silbiger

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday that US officials are currently not talking about a nuclear agreement with their counterparts in Tehran, The Hill reported.

Blinken made the comments during an appearance on CNN’s “GPS” with Fareed Zakaria. The Secretary of State opined that it was a terrible mistake for the Trump administration to pull out of the nuclear deal reached with Iran in 2015.

“There have been some developments and some changes since the time we got out of the deal and the time we were trying to get back in it. But fundamentally what we tried to do was to get back into the existing agreement with some modest modifications,” Blinken said.

“An agreement was on the table. Iran either couldn’t or wouldn’t say yes. We’re not about to take any deal. Of course, it has to meet our security objectives. It has to meet our interests,” he added.

He noted that the Biden administration “made a very good faith effort to get back into compliance with them. They couldn’t or wouldn’t do it. We’re now in a place where we’re not talking about a nuclear agreement.”

“Maybe we’ll have an environment where we can get back into a conversation about their nuclear program. Right now, we’re not in it,” he stated.

The Secretary of State also noted, “We continue to believe strongly that diplomacy is the best way to resolve this problem. That compared to all the other options, it’s the one that can produce the most sustainable, effective result. But that doesn’t mean that the other options aren’t there and if necessary we won’t resort to them.”

Iran responded to Trump’s withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal by scaling back its compliance with the agreement. The Biden administration, however, has sought to return to the deal and held indirect talks with Iran on a return to compliance.

While the talks were stalled in September after the sides failed to reach an agreement on IAEA probes of Iran’s nuclear activities, recent reports indicated that the US and Iran held indirect talks on a new agreement.

A US official then said that the United States and Iran are not discussing an interim nuclear deal, and that Washington had merely conveyed to Tehran what steps might trigger a crisis and also those that may create a better climate between the long-time antagonists.

Later, Blinken denied that an agreement had been reached between the Biden administration and the Iranian government on Iran's nuclear program.

"There is no agreement in the offing, even as we continue to be willing to explore diplomatic paths," Blinken said.