Iran has no intention to talk to the United States unless all sanctions imposed on Tehran are lifted, President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday, a day after President Donald Trump said he would meet his Iranian counterpart to end a nuclear standoff.
"Tehran has never wanted nuclear weapons," Rouhani said in a speech broadcast live on state television, adding that the country was always ready to hold talks.
"But first the U.S. should act by lifting all illegal, unjust and unfair sanctions imposed on Iran," he added. "We will continue to scale back our commitments under the 2015 deal if our interests are not guaranteed.”
Iran has made its position clear in the past months that any possible negotiation with the United States is conditional on lifting of sanctions that are stifling its economy.
Trump pulled the U.S. out of the 2015 nuclear deal and claimed Iran was in violation of the terms of the agreement. European nations have been trying since to keep Iran in the deal that is in imminent danger of collapse.
On Monday, while standing next to French President Emanuel Macron at the end of the G7 meeting, the American president said a meeting with Rouhani in the coming weeks sounds possible if the circumstances were right.
"Iran is not the same country it was two and a half years ago when I came into office," Trump told reporters. "I really believe that Iran can be a great nation... but they can't have nuclear weapons".