Iranian chief rules out possibility of talks with US

Iran’s Rouhani rules out bilateral talks with U.S.

"A committee decides the third step and we will decide. two or three days prior to the deadline", he said late Saturday, quoted by state news agency IRNA.

Iran on Monday threatened to "take a strong step" away from the deal if Europe can not offer new terms by a deadline at the end of this week.

"I see that it's unlikely a conclusion will be reached with Europe today or tomorrow", he said, suggesting European powers have another two months to resume talks to save the landmark nuclear accord.

China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and Germany remain signatories of the agreement.

The disappearance of the Adrian Darya 1, formerly known as the Grace 1, follows a pattern of Iranian oil tankers turning off their Automatic Identification System to try and mask where they deliver their cargo amid US sanctions targeting Iran's energy industry.

Last week, Rouhani said that the U.S. should lift sanctions against Iran as a precondition for negotiations.

It remains unclear what further step Iran will take, though it could involve restarting advanced centrifuges prohibited by the deal or further bumping up its enrichment of uranium.

But Araghchi cast doubt on the likelihood of an agreement being reached before the deadline set by Iran.

The sum is said to account for about half the revenue Iran normally would expect to earn from oil exports in a year.

The Iranian vessel, previously known as the Grace 1, was released in August amid speculation that it planned to transport its cargo to Syria, in breach of European Union sanctions.

But in a speech to parliament on Tuesday, he ruled out a bilateral meeting. "This is the agenda of our talks".

"If America lifts all the sanctions then like before it can join multilateral talks between Tehran and parties to the 2015 deal", he added.

"In the past few weeks, there have been serious negotiations" between Rouhani and Macron, as well as talks with other European nations, said Rabiei.

The Treasury Department says the shipping network is controlled by Iran's Revolutionary Guard and is used to ship hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of oil, mostly to Syria. "We've said it several times and we repeat it - there has been no decision to hold bilateral talks with the United States", said Rouhani.

A senior Iranian official familiar with the negotiations said: "France has offered the credit line of $15 billion but we are still discussing it".

"The United States will not allow Iran to use its space launch program as cover to advance its ballistic missile programs".

Iran in July abandoned two other nuclear commitments: to keep its stockpile of enriched uranium below 300kg and a 3.67-percent cap on the purity of its uranium stocks.

Weapons-grade uranium needs to be enriched to around 90%. He said Iran and France's views regarding the deal have moved closer after the countries' leaders spoke over the phone.

Hawks in the Trump administration adamantly oppose any easing of pressure, saying their goal is not only to contain Iran's nuclear program but to curb the clerical state's influence across the Middle East.

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