British officials travel to Iran to discuss $ 530.8 million debt – Middle East Monitor


British officials traveled to Tehran last week to discuss repayment of £ 400 million ($ 530.8 million) to Iran. The new arab reported.

The over 40 year debt is money Iran turned over to the UK for some never-delivered military tanks, and the failure to repay the money has been a point of tension for a number of years.

British officials debated legal ways to repay the debt while circumventing economic sanctions imposed on Iran.

The US was contacted and asked if a letter could be produced stating that if the UK repays the money owed, the money will not be sanctioned.

Tehran has been ruled that Iran will be repaid by the UK. An anonymous source quoted by Iranian state television said the country could even offer the release of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and other prisoners if the British government turns over the money.

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Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Law and International Affairs Mohsen Baharvand said the Guardian: “We wanted to use this deal to ask our people that we see a good sign from the UK and that will then give us an opportunity to accelerate our efforts to help dual citizens and things like that.”

“Then we had a deal. We signed it, but two days after the deal was signed, the UK government said it couldn’t go ahead with it because of US sanctions.”

The UK is reportedly considering circumventing the sanctions by offering the money as aid, but Baharvand insisted that the money should be paid back as debt rather than aid.

He said, “It’s not helping. Our money is here, and we want our money. It’s simple. We want to get our money.”

“We don’t insist on interest. Otherwise it would be billions. We talk to our British colleagues about which channel is most likely to get the money into our accounts.”

Iran has insisted that the Vienna nuclear talks and the release of Zaghari-Ratcliffe and other prisoners are completely different topics.

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