As the tension between the US and Iran escalates, divide among the Iranian officials emerge with Washington sending aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln along with a number of bombers to the Arab Gulf.
US President Donald Trump said the objective is to force Iran to negotiate over a nuclear deal signed in 2015. Iran suggested it may be willing to hold talks if the United States showed it respect. However, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Tehran would not be pressured into negotiations, the semi-official Fars news agency reported.
Earlier, Iran’s top authority, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said Iran would not negotiate with Washington.
Researcher Firas Elias, an expert on Iranian affairs, said Iran “is not accustomed to dealing with the US threats in such an escalated way”.
“These threats have become aimed at Iran’s regime directly. Trump’s slogan to change Iran’s regional attitude targets the Iranian regime’s mindset. It is mainly aimed at the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps, which plot and plan the Iranian attitude in this regard,” Elias told THE REFERENCE.
”In fact, Iran’s intransigence in the face of the US pressure is driven by Iran’s desire to ease the terms of negotiations with Washington in a bid to get international guarantees for the survival of its regime,” he said.
He added that Iran is facing a challenge of existence, and therefore the Iranian options in how to deal with US sanctions are confused.
“Iran is suffering from very tough economic conditions. Iran is seeking to negotiate with the US, betting on the time factor, trying to get the support of allies — countries and militias. Therefore, we see Iran has stepped up its secret and overt diplomatic activity in this direction,” he said.
“However, Iran may slip. The US administration is looking for in the meantime. That will open the way for Trump to carry out Bolton’s strategy to topple the Iranian regime,” he added.