Iran refuses talks with USA under coercion

An Iranian navy ship in the Strait of Hormuz. File

"If the Iranians demonstrate a commitment to make fundamental changes in how they treat their own people, reduce (what he called) their malign behavior, can agree that it's worthwhile to enter into a nuclear agreement that actually prevents proliferation, then the president said he's prepared to sit down and have the conversation with them".

In Washington, the US State Department tweeted on its Persian-language account: "While it is ultimately up to the #people_of_Iran to determine their country's path, #America supports the voice of the Iranian people, which has been ignored for a long time".

The oil market has been speculating about how much of Iran's exports could be eroded by the USA sanctions, with analysts from BMI Research to Mizuho Securities predicting that China might boost its imports of cheap supplies from the state and offset cuts by other nations.

While South Korea has halted imports from Iran and reports in India indicate it may also bow to the USA campaign, Washington's entreaties to Beijing have proved fruitless, two unnamed officials told Bloomberg.

China has rejected a USA demand to cut Iranian oil imports despite Washington's attempts to bring down the Islamic Republic's oil sales to zero, Bloomberg reports.

On Tuesday, the reimposition of U.S. sanctions will include purchasing of USA dollars, trade in gold and precious metals, coal and industrial-related software, United States imports of Iranian carpets, foodstuffs and some financial transactions. However, only 13 planes have been delivered since sanctions on Iran were lifted under the nuclear pact.

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Washington also imposed a series of additional sanctions on Iranian entities and individuals, as well as foreign companies in Iran, squeezing Iran economically.

Also last month, China, which is Iran's biggest customer, said it did not accept unilateral sanctions against Iran.

In June, the U.S. state department said that countries buying oil from Iran should bring down to zero their Iranian crude imports by the time Washington re-imposes sanctions on November 4.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said his nation will work to save the Iranian nuclear deal to ensure Iranian oil will continue to flow through the market, during a meeting with his Iranian counterpart Zarif. "China will continue to cooperate with Iran adhering to its global obligations", she added.

Last month, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei backed President Hassan Rouhani's suggestion that Iran may block Gulf oil exports if its own exports are stopped.

Last month around 35 percent of Iranian oil exports went to China.

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