Iran would open its nuclear facilities to international inspectors as part of broad negotiations with the United States that could eventually restore diplomatic relations between the adversaries and those talks have the backing of the nation’s supreme leader, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said Sunday.
Zarif also said the United States and its allies must end their crippling economic sanctions as part of any deal. The Western-educated Zarif again repeated Tehran’s position that it has no desire for nuclear weapons but has the right to continue a peaceful nuclear program.
“Negotiations are on the table to discuss various aspects of Iran’s enrichment program. Our right to enrich is nonnegotiable,” Zarif said during an English-language interview that comes amid a significant shift in U.S.-Iranian relations.
Iran’s nuclear ambitions have isolated its people from the rest of the world and led to harmful economic penalties. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has declared the use of nuclear weapons against Islamic law yet has maintained his nation has the right to develop its uranium enrichment program.
But Khamenei, who is the nation’s ultimate decision-maker, also has given his approval for elected leaders in his country to engage the West over the nuclear program, Zarif said.