Pompeo lists conditions for talks with Iran, just hours after Trump said he had no 'preconditions'

  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday expressed his support for President Donald Trump holding talks with Iran, listing specific conditions for such discussions to occur, just hours after the president said he would not require preconditions to sit down with Iranian leaders.
  • “No preconditions. They want to meet? I’ll meet,” Trump said at a joint press conference with Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.
  • Trump stating he has no preconditions for talks with Iran seems to put him at odds with Pompeo and potentially other top advisers.
  • In a speech back in May, Pompeo listed 12 specific conditions that would need to be met for the US to hold talks with Iran after Trump’s controversial decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday expressed his support for President Donald Trump holding talks with Iran, listing specific conditions for such discussions to occur, just hours after the president said he would not require preconditions to sit down with Iranian leaders.

“We’ve said this before. [Trump] wants to meet with folks to solve problems,” Pompeo told CNBC’s “Closing Bell” in an interview that reportedly came about two hours after Trump’s comments.

“If the Iranians demonstrate a commitment to make fundamental changes in how they treat their own people, reduce their malign behaviour, can agree that it’s worthwhile to enter into a nuclear agreement that actually prevents proliferation, then the president said he’s prepared to sit down and have the conversation with them,” Pompeo added.

During a joint press conference earlier in the day with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, who is visiting Washington, DC, Trump said he’d meet with “anybody” when discussing the prospect of holding talks with Iran.

“No preconditions. They want to meet? I’ll meet,” Trump added.

In a speech back in May, Pompeo listed 12 specific conditions that would need to be met for the US to hold talks with Iran after Trump’s controversial decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. The Iranian government swiftly dismissed them as unacceptable.

More recently, Trump and Iranian leaders have engaged in a heated war of words.

After Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said a conflict between the US and Iran would be the “mother of all wars,” Trump last Sunday sent an all-caps tweet warning the Iranian leader not to threaten the US anymore.

Trump softened his tone in a speech last Tuesday in which he said he was ready for talks with Iran, which he reiterated during Monday’s press conference.

But stating he has no preconditions for talks with Iran seemingly puts Trump at odds with some of his top advisers and potentially other Republicans. Former President Barack Obama was heavily criticised by conservatives when he said he’d hold talks with Iran without prior conditions or stipulations.

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