Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
Iran's supreme leader has rejected proposals for direct talks with United States, apparently quashing suggestions for a breakthrough dialogue on the nuclear standoff and other issues.
Thursday's statement posted on Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's website marks his first reaction to the proposals for the one-on-one talks, which received cautious support last week from Iran's foreign minister.
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Khamenei said that the US was proposing talks while "pointing a gun at Iran." The Ayatollah has the final say in all key matters and has previously opposed direct talks with Washington. "Such negotiations "would solve nothing," he said.
Iran and six world powers, including the US are scheduled to resume nuclear negotiations later this month.
Also on Thursday, Iran's state TV broadcasted footage allegedly extracted from the CIA drone captured in 2011.
The video shows an aerial view of an airport and a city, said to be Kandahar, Afghanistan.
Iran has long claimed it managed to reverse-engineer the RQ-170 Sentinel and that it is capable of launching its own production line for the unmanned aircraft.
The Revolutionary Guard's airspace chief, Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, said in another part of the video that only after capturing the drone, Iran realized it "belongs to the CIA."
Iran claims it "took control of the drone and landed it" but US officials have said it malfunctioned and had to land.
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