US ‘ready for serious negotiations’ with Iran

US 'ready for serious negotiations' with Iran
Qasem Soleimani's killing sharply increased tensions in the Middle East. Source: Getty Images
3 Min Read

Daily US Times, Washington: The US says they are ”ready to engage without preconditions in serious negotiations” with Iran in a letter to the UN.

The country sent this letter after both of them exchanged hostilities.

In the letter, the US justified the killing of General Qasem Soleimani as an act of self-defense. Iran retaliated the attack by firing missiles to the airbases where US troops are stationed. Iran also claimed the step as self-defense. Iran’s missiles caused no casualties.

Qasem Soleimani, widely considered the second most powerful man in Iran, was killed by a US airstrike last Friday.

The killing escalated tensions in the region as Iran vowed ‘harsh revenge’ against the US.

As head of the Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds Force, he changed the Middle East’s landscape in favor of Iran.

On Thursday, the Revolutionary Guards’ aerospace commander, Amir Ali Hajizadeh said the attack is the beginning of a series of strikes against US interests.

He said they have no intention of killing US troops,rather they want to damage US military operations.

Tehran had “used cyber-attacks to disable US plane and drone navigation systems” during the missile strikes, he said.

What does the letter say?

US ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft said in a letter to the UN Security Council that the US was ready to negotiate “with the goal of preventing further endangerment of international peace and security or escalation by the Iranian regime.”

It says the killing of Soleimani was justified under Article 51 of the UN Charter, which requires states to “immediately report” to the Security Council any measures taken in exercising the right of self-defense.

The US would take additional action “as necessary” in the Middle East to protect its personnel and interests, the letter added.

Iran described the US offer to negotiate as ‘unbelievable’ while the US continued to enforce harsh economic sanctions against Iran.

How did it get here

A US airstrike killed Iran’s top military General Qasem Soleimani on early hours of Friday. Soleimani was the chief of Quds Force, a special unit if Revolutionary Guard, and was very popular in his country. He was considered the second most powerful person in the country right next to supreme leader Ayatullah Khamenei.

His killing fuels extreme anger to the Iranians and sharply increased tensions across the Middle East. Soleimani changed the landscape of Iranian influence in the region. His force mainly works outside of Iran and has a direct influence in many groups active in the region.

The US regarded Soleimani as a’ terrorist’ and blame him for the deaths of hundreds of American troops. The US embassy in Baghdad was attacked recently, and the US blamed Soleimani of plotting the attack.

After the US killed Soleimani, Iran vowed severe revenge. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the ‘Americans would not only suffer today but also in coming years’.

Trump warned Iran to forget about retaliation, and if the country did, US targets their 52 sites, including cultural sites.

Trump’s comment about targeting cultural sites faced lots of criticism as it is considered a war crime.

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