Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi

Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Seyyed Abbas Araghchi has said that former US President Barack Obama had imposed much harder sanctions against Iran but eventually was forced to come to the negotiating table. Donald Trump is following the footsteps and failed policies of his predecessor.

Iran Press/Iran news: The US like a bully is putting pressure on other countries to limit foreign trade with Iran, but in fact Washington is isolating itself politically, Araghchi told Spain's ABC newspaper.

Commenting on the impact of new US sanction , Seyyed Abbas Araghchi said: "Before the new rounds of sanctions and even before Donald Trump took office, some foreign firms had stopped their activities in Iran because of the uncertainty and psychological pressure created by the enemies.

Around 3,000 companies are working with Iran and these firms are not linked with the US. What they need is an independent financial channel for doing business.

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Answering a question about possibility of increasing the number of centrifuges like what happened after previous rounds of US sanctions, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister said: 'If there is no agreement, there will be no limitations. Iran's nuclear program will remain peaceful and civilian in nature, forever. We used to have first generation centrifuges and now we are working on the third and fourth generation centrifuges but we do not want to reach a point of tension'.

In the first round of sanction, Iran increased its centrifuges from 200 to 20,000 at the time.

Iran's Deputy FM rejected allegations made by Donald Trump that Iran is misusing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to develop nuclear arms, said: Iran nuclear program is under supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) which has verified 13 times Iran's commitment to its obligations under the deal.

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Araghchi on the issue of war in Yemen said: "We have no presence in Yemen. We are in contact with Houthis but this does not mean that they (Houthis) are doing whatever we want them to do. We are trying to help establish peace in that country".

"This war is the result of Saudis' miscalculations. They used to talk about eliminating the Houthis within two months but after four years, the war is still raging in that country. This is why they seek to blame this on Iran. The solution is not the war but rather politics," Iran's Deputy FM said.

Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating military campaign against Yemen in March 2015, with the aim of bringing the government of former president Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi back to power and crushing the country’s Popular Houthi Ansarullah movement. Some 16,000 Yemenis have been killed, thousands more injured and millions of people have been displaced from their homes and are internal refugees, but still are living under continuous bombardment.

The United Nations describes Yemen as the world's worst humanitarian disaster.

Asked if President Hassan Rouhani had some evidence to support his statement that dissident Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi were murdered with the support of the United States, Araghchi said 'President Rouhani meant that Washington's all-out support for the Saudi Arabian government has emboldened it to do whatever it wished including Khashoggi's murder. Even the US is supplying arms to Saudi Arabia for its war on Yemen.'

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