Former Iranian president Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has said the United States could reopen its embassy in Iran but warned it will only be possible if the two countries reach a common ground in the nuclear talks.
In an interview with The Guardian daily published on Sunday, Rafsanjani said opening a US embassy in Tehran is not impossible but it depends on the two countries.
“An American embassy could reopen in Tehran. But that depends on the behaviour of both sides,” he said.
“Now in the nuclear talks, if we see a different US, it will have a positive impact on the Iranian public,” he added.
The former president also hailed the ongoing nuclear negotiations, saying Iran broke the “taboo” of having direct negotiations with the United States.
“Having face-to-face negotiations is better than talking at long distance through the media,” Rafsanjani said. “That Iran is talking directly to the US is a good move.”
Rafsanjani is currently the chairman of the Expediency Discernment Council, a constitutional body that serves as a mediator between the parliament and the Guardian Council.
Iran and the group of P5+1 - China, France, Russia, the UK and the US plus Germany - are having nuclear talks in Vienna for a final deal aimed to resolve the issues over Iran’s nuclear programme.
The parties previously missed a June 30 deadline for a final agreement before setting a new deadline for June 7.
Reports suggest that a new deadline of July 10 will be imposed, according to Reuters. Talks have intensified since the original deadline was missed.
However, pivotal differences remain, including limits on nuclear research and development and guidelines for inspections.