Qatar's Ruler Meets Iran's President in Bid to Salvage Nuclear Deal

Iran's President Raisi seized the opportunity to slam Western nations, insisting that their presence is not 'providing security in the region' but 'harming the security'

Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani attends Doha Forum in Doha, Qatar, in March.
Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani attends Doha Forum in Doha, Qatar, in March.Credit: IBRAHEEM AL OMARI/ REUTERS

Qatar’s emir met with Iran's president on Thursday, offering support for efforts to revive the nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers, even as talks on the tattered accord remain deadlocked.

“We believe that negotiation is the solution of the problem,” the official IRNA news agency quoted visiting Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani as saying after meeting President Ebrahim Raisi. The two also discussed a range of other issues, including Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and the war in Yemen,

Raisi seized the opportunity to slam Western nations, insisting that their presence is not “providing security in the region" but “harming the security.” Iran sees the presence of U.S. forces in neighboring countries – on its doorstep – as a threat.

A nuclear research reactor at the headquarters of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, which went online with American help in 1967, in 2014.Credit: Vahid Salemi /AP

Raisi described Sheikh Tamim's one-day visit to Tehran as a turning point in relations between Iran and Qatar.

The visit came as the European Union’s coordinator on nuclear talks, Enrique Mora, was still in Iran. The talks in Vienna have been stalled for months, apparently over an Iranian demand that Washington lift a terrorism designation on Iran’s powerful paramilitary Revolutionary Guard.

Mora met with the Iranian nuclear negotiator on Wednesday, just after Iranian intelligence services announced they had detained two European citizens. Talks continued on Thursday, Iranian media reported without giving details.

The stakes are high, since failure to reinstate the pact could carry the risk of a fresh regional war, with Israel, Iran's arch-foe, threatening military action if diplomacy collapses.

Almost a year of indirect talks between Tehran and Washington to save the pact has been on hold since March, chiefly over Tehran's insistence that the U.S. remove the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), its elite security force, from the U.S. Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) list.

Washington has made it clear that it has no such plans, while also not ruling it out.

Iran's hardline rulers believe that an uncompromising approach, spearheaded by the country's strongly anti-Western Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, can force Washington to accept Tehran’s demands, Iranian officials told Reuters last month.

Under the 2015 pact, Iran curbed its sensitive uranium enrichment work, a possible pathway to nuclear arms, in return for the lifting of economic sanctions.

Click the alert icon to follow topics:



Automatic approval of subscriber comments.

Subscribe today and save 40%

Already signed up? LOG IN


Palestinians search through the rubble of a building in which Khaled Mansour, a top Islamic Jihad militant was killed following an Israeli airstrike in Rafah, southern Gaza strip, on Sunday.

Gazans Are Tired of Pointless Wars and Destruction, and Hamas Listens to Them

Trump and Netanyahu at the White House in Washington, in 2020.

Three Years Later, Israelis Find Out What Trump Really Thought of Netanyahu

German soldier.

The Rival Jewish Spies Who Almost Changed the Course of WWII

Rio. Not all Jewish men wear black hats.

What Does a Jew Look Like? The Brits Don't Seem to Know

Galon. “I’m coming to accomplish a specific mission: to increase Meretz’s strength and ensure that the party will not tread water around the electoral threshold. If Meretz will be large enough, it will be the basis for a Jewish-Arab partnership.” Daniel Tchetchik

'I Have No Illusions About Ending the Occupation, but the Government Needs the Left'

Soldiers using warfare devices made by the Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems.

Russia-Ukraine War Catapults Israeli Arms Industry to Global Stage