Play Audio Clip Listen to audio clip.
Iran will return to nuclear talks before the end of November, despite last month’s election in which moderates gained power.
Newly inaugurated Iranian President Hassan Rouhani met with the U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer in Tehran on Friday, and the two sides agreed to re-establish diplomatic and commercial ties, including opening a U.S. embassy in Iran and resuming oil trading.
European companies are anxious to re-open their operations in Iran even though it is illegal for American companies to do business with Iran under U.S. sanctions that are up for renewal in May. Iran and the U.S. were unable to reach a nuclear deal last year because the Obama administration lacked congressional support.
Lighthizer said the United States “is prepared to enter into bilateral discussions at any time with Iran to resolve other issues.” However, he said, Washington will continue to use “robust sanctions, taken as a whole, to make clear that we are committed to our interests and those of our allies and partners in the region.”