The US government will not release anyone from sanctions against Iran, said Brian Hook, US Department of State special envoy for Iran in Washington on Wednesday.
The diplomat told reporters that France would open a $ 15 billion credit line with Iran.
“We have introduced sanctions now, and we will have more sanctions in the future. We cannot make our commitment to a policy of maximum pressure any more clear. And we do not plan to make any exceptions or deferrals in this matter,” Hook said.
In response to a specific journalist’s question as to whether Washington would still consider giving the French initiative a green light, Hook said he had not yet studied the French proposal.
On Wednesday, US government officials asking for their names to be withheld also expressed reservations about the French proposal at a teleconference with foreign journalists. As they put it, US government officials are not yet aware of the specific details of the French offer, so it would be difficult to judge. One official stressed: US President Donald Trump “is consulting very closely with our partners and allies, listening to their ideas, but we have not yet seen any plan that has more substance than the myriad ideas put forward last year.”
France has suggested opening a credit line with Iran by the end of the year. French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposal is also backed by EU diplomats, according to American newspaper reports.
The essence of the proposal is to allow Iran to sell a certain amount of crude oil – 700,000 barrels a day – according to press reports, but Tehran would have to make a number of commitments. These commitments would include the return to a multi-nuclear atom signed in 2015 and the opening of further negotiations on the post-2025 nuclear program. French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian confirmed Tuesday that talks with Iran on a credit line are ongoing. On Monday, an Iranian negotiating delegation traveled to the French capital.