‘Ball is firmly in the court of US in nuclear talks with Iran’
However, right now the expert believes the American stance remains 'unconstructive'.
Iran's nuclear program is once again in the spotlight as another round of talks got underway in Kazakhstan involving the UN Security Council members and Germany. In return for lifting some sanctions, the international community is demanding Iran stops uranium production and shuts down an enrichment facility, fearing the country may be trying to develop a nuclear weapon.
Tehran maintains its ambitions are purely peaceful but with Israel threatening military action if there's no breakthrough the stakes are high.
RT:What can we expect from this round of talks?
Seyed Mohammad Marandi: I’m not very optimistic at the moment for any major breakthrough, because western countries have still shown no sign of recognizing Iran’s right to enrich uranium as an independent and sovereign country. Western countries like to present themselves as the international community, which they are not. The international community is the majority of countries in the world, and Iran is supported by the international community such as the non-aligned movement, which constitutes itself uniting three fifths of the countries in the world. They too say that Iran has the right to enrich uranium and they are completely opposed to the policies being pursued by the western countries.
RT:Are the international community's demands realistic?
SMM: No, not at all because the demands basically run against Iran’s sovereignty and independence. Both individuals and nations are innocent until proven guilty. The Iranians have been open to the IAEA, the Iranians actually halted nuclear enrichment for about two years. They allowed the additional protocol to be implemented in Iran for extra inspections and insights that Iran didn’t have to allow. And there was no evidence at all ever found that Iran’s nuclear program wasn’t anything but peaceful.
RT:The US and Israel have repeatedly issued warnings of military action against Tehran if the nuclear question is not resolved - do these threats have any effect on the Iranian leadership?
SMM: The threat themselves are against international law, just like American sanctions, American hostility towards ordinary Iranians through the embargo on the Central Bank and trying to prevent Iranians from even importing medicines – these are against international law and violate fundamental human rights. The Iranians were invaded by Saddam Hussein in the 1980s and they didn’t capitulate, and the Iranians will not capitulate to the US for the same reason. The Iranians will not allow their sovereignty to be violated. They are open to the solution but the US has to behave more reasonably, rationally and in a humane manner. If the US changes its policy the Iranians are more than willing to open up more to resolve any of the misunderstandings or if there are any doubts about the Iranian nuclear program the Iranians are willing to resolve it. But the ball is firmly in the court of the US.