Biden aide visited Oman to seek mediation with Iran: Report

US President Joe Biden’s senior West Asia adviser took a low-profile trip to Oman earlier this month for talks with Omani officials on “possible diplomatic outreach” to Iran over its nuclear program, according to a report.

Brett McGurk traveled to Muscat on May 8 to discuss “a new diplomatic push over Iran’s nuclear program with Omani mediation,” the US-based news website Axios claimed in a report on Tuesday, citing Israeli and US officials.

“The Omanis are holding proximity talks between the US and Iran,” Axios quoted an Israeli official as saying.

The report added that the White House is exploring through the Omani government whether Iran is open to taking steps that would put some limits on its nuclear program and what it would want in return.

Negotiations between Iran and the other parties to a 2015 nuclear agreement hit an impasse in August 2022 over Washington’s failure to guarantee that it would abide by the deal.

The US left the deal, officially called the JCPOA, in 2018 and slapped “maximum pressure” sanctions against Iran despite Tehran’s full compliance with its commitments under the deal.

Those negotiations were aimed at reviving the JCPOA and making sure all parties, particularly the US, would fully comply with it.

Axios reported in April that the Biden administration discussed with its European and Israeli partners a possible proposal for an “interim agreement” with Iran that would include some sanctions relief in exchange for Tehran freezing parts of its nuclear program.

Iran has rejected a partial removal of US sanctions and has repeatedly warned that the window of opportunity to reach an agreement would not remain open forever.

News ID 195437


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