Blinken Says Freeing Of Americans Is Not Connected To Nuclear Talks

The attempts to return home American citizens unfairly jailed in Iran are unrelated to the efforts to rein in Tehran’s nuclear program, according to Secretary of State Antony Blinken. He continued by saying that the Biden administration’s objections to Iran’s human rights violations, support for terrorist proxies in the Middle East, attacks against U.S. troops in the region, and provision of weapons to Russia for use in Ukraine remain unchanged despite Iran’s positive steps toward freeing the imprisoned Americans.

According to Blinken, the transfer of prisoners from jail to home detention has nothing to do with the Iranian government’s policies and is only for the well-being of our people.

The Biden administration said five American prisoners were freed and put under house detention in Iran last week as part of ongoing discussions for their ultimate return to the United States.

According to U.S. officials, conversations between the United States and Iran are still underway to liberate the Americans. Six billion dollars in oil earnings have been locked in a South Korean bank, and as part of the discussions, the administration has agreed to let Tehran use the funds for humanitarian reasons.

According to reports, a swap of Iranians detained in the United States on accusations connected to sanctions breaches is also required to release the Americans.

Blinken insisted that the administration’s efforts to engage in dialogue with Iran to halt the country’s nuclear weapons development were independent of the discussions to secure the Americans’ release. After Trump withdrew from the nuclear pact (JCPOA) and throttled Iran’s nuclear proliferation plans in return for the loosening of sanctions, Iran resumed its efforts in this area.

Blinken refused to corroborate a Wall Street Journal claim that Iran has halted the production of weapons-grade uranium in an attempt to reduce tensions related to the release of Iranians incarcerated in U.S. prisons, the repatriation of detained Americans, and the use of Iran’s oil revenues for humanitarian causes. He also declined to comment on the case of U.S. permanent resident Shahab Dalili, who has been imprisoned in Iran since 2016 and whose family claims he is being held against his will.