Iran will not give up on its plans to avenge the 2020 U.S. assassination of Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani, despite “regular offers” from Washington to lift sanctions and provide other concessions in return, a top official said on Thursday.

Over the last year, Iran and the United States have had indirect talks in Vienna to revive a 2015 nuclear deal that was abandoned by Washington in 2018 by then-President Donald Trump and subsequently violated by Tehran.

“The enemy keeps sending messages that if we give up on avenging Soleimani, they will give us some concessions or lift some sanctions,” Revolutionary Guards’ Navy Commander Alireza Tangsiri said. “This is pure fantasy. The Supreme Leader has emphasized the need for revenge and the Revolutionary Guards’ top commander has said that revenge is inevitable and that we will choose the time and place for it.”

There was no immediate response from the United States to Tangsiri’s comment.

Trump reimposed sanctions on Iran, which in response boosted its nuclear enrichment programme beyond the limits of the accord with world powers who sought to make it more difficult for Iran to develop a nuclear bomb. Iran says its nuclear programme is solely for peaceful purposes.

Negotiations with the administration of President Joe Biden have mainly stalled over Tehran’s demand of Washington to remove the Revolutionary Guards from its Foreign Terrorist Organizations list, something that the U.S. would not be ready to consider unless the Guards agree to rein in their influence in the Middle East and cease threats against American forces.

Soleimani, head of the Guards’ elite Quds Force, was killed by U.S. air strikes in January 2020 while on a visit to Iraq’s capital Baghdad.

Source » reuters