Elliot Abrams at meeting in Jerusalem
Elliot Abrams at meeting in Jerusalem Matty Stern, US Embassy Jerusalem

Elliot Abrams, the United States Special Representative for Iran, met with senior Israeli officials in Jerusalem recently, including Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Benny Gantz, and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi.

During the meetings, Abrams made clear that regardless of which administration will be in control of the White House next year, the US will work to bring Iran back to the negotiating table.

“It doesn’t really matter who is president on January 20, in the sense that there’s going to be a negotiation with Iran anyway,” Abrams said at a press conference in Tel Aviv on Monday.

“That was the intention of the Trump administration. So that’s not a source of disagreement.”

“But the question is how do you put together a new deal. Iran hasn’t adhered to the current deal. The Middle East has changed over the last five years, and Iran needs to internalize that.”

“The regime is in a situation in which they really need these sanctions lifted. And if we demand changes in their conduct, I don’t think they have another option.”

“As the economy comes under more pressure, the regime understands that this could have a significant political impact inside the country.”

“In any situation like this, you build pressure and you build [more] pressure. And then you use it. That was the Biden plan; that is the Trump plan, to enter negotiations with Iran, to use the pressure. I think if the pressure is maintained and used, we’ll see a good outcome.”