Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Sunday assigned Deputy Foreign Minister for European and American Affairs Saeed Jalili as Secretary of the country’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC). Dr. Saeed Jalili replaces Ali Larijani who was believed to attend the next round of nuclear talks with EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana in Rome this week before he resigned on Saturday.
Meantime, Tehran said that it would send both the former and present chief nuclear negotiators, Ali Larijani and Saeed Jalili, to the meeting with Solana in Rome on Tuesday.
“Dr Jalili will be there, and Dr Larijani will be there as well,” Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini told reporters during his weekly press conference earlier on Sunday, adding that Larijani will attend the meeting with Solana as the representative of the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in the SNSC.
Hosseini also reminded that President Ahmadinejad has accepted Larijani’s resignation, but meantime reiterated that the country’s nuclear policies would remain unchanged.
“The Islamic Republic’s nuclear policies, strategies and goals are irrevocable,” he said.
“Our officials will continue strongly along the same road and no change will come about,” he added.
Hosseini dismissed talk of any divisions over policy or any change in strategy.
“There is complete solidarity among the ranks of Iranian officials.”
Larijani will in fact stay on the council in his position as Ayatollah Khamenei’s representative, and Hosseini did not confirm that the Rome meeting would be his last.
He said, while both would attend these talks, it was not yet clear if both would attend future meetings.
“This is how we will attend this meeting. For the future let us wait and see,” he said.