US: No plans for Trump-Rouhani meeting

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says no meeting between US, Iranian presidents scheduled despite Trump's openness to a meeting.

Gary Willig,

Donald Trump
Donald Trump
Reuters

US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday that there are currently "no plans" for President Donald Trump to meet Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

“As of now, there is no plan for the president to meet with him, although the president has said that he is prepared to meet with no conditions,” Mnuchin said on CNBC’s Squawk Box.

Addressing concerns that the Trump Administration will ease sanctions on Iran, Mnuchin said: “Secretary Pompeo, I and the rest of the national security team are executing on a maximum pressure strategy with Iran. There’s no question that it’s working. We have cut off their money. And that’s the reason why if they do come back to the negotiating table, they are coming back.”

Last month, President Trump stated that there was a "very good chance" he would meet with Rouhani.

"Iran is not the same country that was two and a half years ago," the US president said at the G7 summit. "Iran was the number one terrorist sponsor in the world.When I took office, there were 18 friction centers in the world backed by Iran, at the very least financed by Iran. They used money from the agreement for bad purposes."

Trump further stated that he had "no problem" with holding a meeting with Rouhani hours after Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu revealed the existence of another secret nuclear facility in Iran.

Despite Trump's willingness to meet, Rouhani has made clear that he will not meet Trump unless all sanctions against Tehran are unilaterally lifted by the US.

The US has imposed a series of sanctions on Iran since withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear deal, and has sanctioned senior officials such as Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

Iran has been scaling back its commitments in the 2015 deal in response to Trump’s withdrawal from the deal.




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