The United States has issued visas to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Javad Zarif in order to attend next week's high-level meeting at the UN General Assembly, Iran’s Mission to the UN Spokesperson Alireza Miryousefi stated.
"The Foreign Minister is leaving for New York on Friday morning to attend the 74th session of the UNGA", the ministry's spokesman, Abbas Mousavi, wrote on his Twitter blog, without specifying whether the visa issue had been resolved.
Iranian media outlets earlier reported, without providing a source, that Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani and his delegation, including the foreign minister, might not attend the UN General Assembly, as they still did not have US entry visas.
The statements came against the backdrop of escalating tensions between Iran and the United States. The relations substantially worsened last year after US President Donald Trump withdrew his country from the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran and began re-imposing sanctions. In May and June, Washington blamed Iran for a series of security incidents, including attacks on tankers in the Gulf of Oman, and has built up its military presence in the Middle East. Iran has rejected the allegations and accused the United States of trying to find a pretext for conflict.
Most recently, Washington said that Iran was behind Saturday's attack on Saudi Aramco's oil facilities. Following these remarks, Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei said that Tehran would not hold talks with the United States on any level due to the latter's "policy of maximum pressure on Iran".