A US official confirmed that Washington was in contact with Iran regarding nuclear deal talks late Monday, but denied that discussions on an interim agreement were taking place, Reuters news agency reported.
The US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Washington had communicated with Iran to warn it regarding what measures could be met with belligerence or conversely, help facilitate more productive negotiations.
“There are no talks about an interim deal,” the US official said.
“We have made clear to them what escalatory steps they needed to avoid to prevent a crisis and what de-escalatory steps they could take to create a more positive context,” he added.
The comment marks the first time the US has confirmed communicating with Iran since indirect talks on a new deal fell apart nearly a year ago. Last week, the White House denied making progress on a new nuclear deal, but did not comment on whether or not talks were place.
The remarks came hours after Iran appeared to acknowledge reports that talks were taking place, with the country’s Foreign Ministry thanking Oman for its role as mediator between the rivals.