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U.S., Iran Officials Deny Tillerson-Zarif Meeting

Both U.S. and Iranian officials have denied reports that U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif may meet next week on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly amid Washington’s increasing objections to the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers.

State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert followed her Iranian counterpart Bahram Qassemi, saying there were no plans for the two to meet.

European, Israeli, and Arab media have reported that Tillerson and Zarif might meet next week in New York to discuss the Trump administration’s objections to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.

German media reported that the proposal came from European foreign policy sources, in order to mediate between Washington and Tehran, while the Times Of Israel even reported that “European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini will chair the talks, held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting.”

However, both Washington and Tehran denied these reports on September 14.

The IAEA, the UN watchdog monitoring compliance with the 2015 nuclear agreement, has found Iran adhering to the deal. However, the Trump administration has frequently charged that Tehran breaks the "spirit" of the deal by continuing to test-launch ballistic missiles and rockets capable of carrying nuclear warheads.

On September 14, the United States extended the waiver of nuclear-related sanctions on Iran but slapped new ones on 11 companies and individuals accused of engaging in cyberattacks against U.S. banks.