US President Donald Trump has urged Iranian leaders to phone him up to discuss matters related to possible negotiations between the two sides aimed at resolving the ongoing bilateral tensions.
“What I would like to see with Iran, I would like to see them call me. If they do, we are open to talk to them”, Trump told reporters at the White House on Thursday.
The statement was followed by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo quoting Trump as saying that he “looks forward to someday meeting with leaders of Iran in order to work out an agreement and, very importantly, taking steps to give Iran the future it deserves”.
Trump’s latest remark comes on the heels of Washington on Wednesday announcing a new round of anti-Iranian sanctions aimed at the Islamic Republic’s iron, steel, aluminium, and copper sectors.
Earlier that day, Tehran, in turn, announced that it would backtrack on some of its "voluntary" commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron said Washington would be "responsible" if the Iran nuclear deal completely collapses. All other signatories of the JCPOA are keen to see it intact, but with the US insistent on using sanctions to force Tehran back to the negotiating table, the other parties may struggle to prevent it from unravelling.