Iran claims that indirect negotiations with the US are still ongoing through Oman

Iran announced on Monday that talks with the United States about its nuclear agreement and potential prisoner swaps have resumed indirectly through the Sultanate of Oman.

Western nations have long been concerned about Iran’s nuclear program, which has led to sanctions that have severely harmed the nation’s economy.

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A 2015 agreement gave Tehran much-needed reprieve from sanctions in return for limitations on its nuclear program, but it was doomed by the United States’ unilateral withdrawal in 2018.

The two capitals have recently refuted media suggestions that they were nearing an interim agreement to replace the 2015 pact.

“We welcome the efforts of Omani officials and we exchanged messages with the other party through this mediator” over the lifting of US sanctions, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said Monday.

“We have never stopped the diplomatic processes,” he added during his weekly press conference, emphasising that the talks “were not secret.”

Following the Islamic revolution in 1979, which was led by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the country’s first supreme leader, diplomatic relations between Tehran and Washington deteriorated in 1980.

The 2015 nuclear deal has not been successfully revived despite numerous attempts.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader of Iran, reaffirmed his country’s denial of nuclear weapons development on Sunday.

Deals might be done, he added, so long as they don’t alter “the nuclear industry’s existing infrastructure.”

The United States and Iran have also engaged in negotiations over a potential prisoner swap under the mediation of Oman.

On Monday, Kanani stated that a prisoner exchange might be reached “shortly” if Washington shows “the same level of seriousness” as Tehran.

Iranian authorities are holding at least three Iranian-Americans, including businessman Siamak Namazi, who was detained in October 2015 and given a 10-year prison term for espionage.

Ebrahim Raisi, the president of Iran, has begun a three-nation visit of South America with the intention of strengthening relations on the political and economic fronts with partners that reject Western hegemony.

The president left Tehran early on Monday morning and is scheduled to travel to Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua, all of which are subject to US sanctions.

According to Iranian official media, the five-day trip will start in Venezuela. It has been 21 months since the beginning of Raisi’s administration, and this is his 13th journey abroad.

Along with the president’s chief of staff and political affairs deputy, the president is joined by his ministers of foreign affairs, petroleum, defense, and health.

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