Iranian lawmaker Mohammad-Javad Jamali-Nobandegani is convinced that US President Donald Trump is seeking to achieve his political and campaign objectives through negotiation with Iran.
Trump has repeatedly voiced his eagerness to hold talks with Iran following his decision to pull the US out of the Iran nuclear deal in May 2018.
Tehran has said it is not open to negotiations while the reimposed economic sanctions – lifted under the nuclear deal – remain in place.
“I believe Trump is considering the negotiation as part of his systematic pressure on Iran,” the secretary of the Iranian Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee said in an exclusive interview with Iran Daily.
“Instead of being after a fair deal, Trump intends to boast that his economic and psychological pressure forced Iran back to negotiations,” Iranian MP said.
“Through his rhetoric, Trump is willing to cause a dispute among Iranians on renegotiations,” the lawmaker added.
Should he fail to reach an agreement with Iran, Jamali-Nobandegani believes, the US president will suffer a major blow to his 2020 presidential campaign.
“Iran, meanwhile, has resolutely refused to respond in Trump’s favor, proving that it would never be bullied into imposed negotiations,” he asserted.
“One of Trump’s biggest mistakes was to employ all of his political leverage to pile on the pressure on Iranians and now he is empty-handed in dealing with Iran,” said Jamali-Nobandegani.
The Iranian MP believes that the US president has presented an untrustworthy image of himself, saying that his behavior indicates no sense of liability.
“He pulled out of the nuclear deal, which was a hard-fought multilateral agreement. He also withdrew the US from the Paris Agreement, as well as the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia; he called into question the NAFTA treaty – signed with Canada and Mexico – and has even threatened to leave NATO,” he said.
In June 2017, Trump announced that the US would cease all participation in the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change mitigation, saying, “The Paris accord will undermine the [US] economy,” and will put his country “at a permanent disadvantage.”
“He rejects all the norms of international relations, and he might even violate his own agreements,” said the MP.
Regarding the 2020 US presidential election, Jamali-Nobandegani said, “Nineteen of the democratic candidates have expressed their approval of the nuclear deal with Iran.”
“However, Iran will not gamble on negotiations with the next US president — if it’s not Trump — as it is not clear if the next US administration would still support the deal,” the lawmaker continued, insisting that Iran will have to rely only on its own capacities.
Citing US policy toward Iran in the past forty years, Jamali-Nobandegani said that Washington had consistently adopted a ‘’hostile policy” towards Iran.
“I believe that US officials’ approach has not changed over the years; the Republican (Ronald) Reagan put the same pressure on Iran as the Democrat (Jimmy) Carter did,” the lawmaker added.
When asked about his prediction for the next US presidential elections, the lawmaker said, “As Trump said himself in his 2016 campaign, a behind-the-scene group decides the outcome of the elections, by which he means the ‘Zionist lobby’ ”.
“I recently talked to some European diplomats who also tipped Trump to be reelected as he probably won’t face tough competition,” Jamali-Nobandegani concluded.