BIARRITZ, FRANCE (Reuters) — US President Donald Trump said on Monday he would meet Iran’s president under the right circumstances to end a confrontation over a 2015 nuclear deal and that talks were underway to see how countries could open credit lines to keep Iran’s economy afloat.
But Trump, speaking at a G-7 summit in the French resort of Biarritz, ruled out lifting economic sanctions to compensate for losses suffered by Iran. Trump told reporters it was realistic to envisage a meeting between him and President Hassan Rouhani in coming weeks, describing Iran as a country of “tremendous potential”.
“I have a good feeling. I think he (Rouhani) is going to want to meet and get their situation straightened out. They are hurting badly,” Trump said.
French President Emmanuel Macron, the host of the G-7 summit, said that Rouhani had told him he would be open to meeting Trump. Macron said he hoped a summit between the two men could happen in coming weeks. Trump and Rouhani head to the UN General Assembly in September.
Rouhani is not Iran’s top decision-maker. That role is held by supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei – and anything agreed at a Trump-Rouhani encounter would be subject to Khamenei’s approval.