WASHINGTON — Three weeks ago, in a show of both good faith and diplomatic pressure, the United States offered to rejoin nuclear talks with Iran. The double-edged overture fell flat: Iran refused to meet without first receiving financial incentives, and the Biden administration made clear, as the White House national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, put it, that “the ball is in their court.”
That set off a new rush among world powers to resuscitate a 2015 nuclear accord that the United States exited three years after negotiating it, leaving Iran to steadily violate the terms of the deal.
Diplomats from Britain, France and Germany have since urged Iran to accept a joint European-American invitation on Feb. 18 to begin informal negotiations. Officials from China and Russia have taken a more sympathetic approach in asking Tehran in recent days to return to talks. President Hassan Rouhani of Iran discussed the delicate diplomacy in a phone call with Prime Minister Boris Johnson of Britain on Wednesday and President Emmanuel Macron of France last week.
“We have to use this window of opportunity,” Josep Borrell Fontelles, the European Union’s top foreign policy official, told an Atlantic Council forum on Feb. 23.
Mr. Grossi kept Tehran from crossing a diplomatic red line.
it withdrew from the deal in May 2018.
“America was first in breaking with the agreement and it should be the first to return to it,” Mr. Rouhani said on Wednesday during a cabinet meeting in Tehran.
However, he added: “America should know that we are ready to implement the agreement. We are ready to implement it full in return for full and parts in return for parts. We are ready to return to our full commitments for their full return or part of our commitments for their partial return.”