US rules out opening embassy in Iran after UK move

25th Aug 2015
US rules out opening embassy in Iran after UK move

WASHINGTON (AA): U.S. announced Monday that it has “no intention” to reopen an embassy in Tehran, just one day after United Kingdom reopened its diplomatic mission in the Iranian capital.

A potential thaw in ties between Washington and Tehran began to receive more attention after Iran and six world powers — including United States — signed an agreement last month in Vienna to curb Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange of sanctions relief.

During Monday’s press briefing, U.S. State Department’s Spokesman, John Kirby said that U.S. had no plans to reopen an embassy in Iran, while describing the U.K.’s decision to reopen an embassy as a “sovereign decision”.

“For the United States, we have no intention to do that (opening embassy in Tehran),” Kirby said.

“What we want to see out of Iran is actions, the appropriate actions to prove that they are going to meet their end of this deal before they get a penny of sanctions relief, and that’s what our focus is.”

In 1979, U.S. had closed its embassy in Tehran after more than fifty American diplomats and embassy staff were taken hostage for 444 days by some Iranian students.

Since then, the United States does not have a physical or diplomatic presence in Iran.

During a joint press conference on Sunday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said the reopening of their respective embassies in Tehran and London marked the first step in the rebuilding of bilateral ties.

The decision of mutually reopening diplomatic missions from the two countries came following the recently reached deal on Iran’s nuclear program.

Author: Esra Kaymak
[Photo: Iran UK Foreign Secretary Phillip Hammond with UK Charge d’Affaires Ajay Sharma at the reopening of British embassy in Tehran, Iran on 23 Aug 2015. Photo: Fatemeh Bahrami Anadolu Ajansi]

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