Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman called on US officials to “act responsibly”, stop risking the lives of Iranian prisoners in the US and let them go.
In a tweet on Tuesday, the Iranian official told Washington to “stop talking rubbish,” noting that Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has since September 2018 put ‘universal prisoners swap’ on the table.
The tweet came after Ken Cuccinelli, acting deputy secretary of the US Homeland Security Department, on Monday urged Tehran to send a charter plane to take home 11 Iranian nationals whom Washington wants to deport, and accused the Islamic Republic of stalling the repatriation process, Tasnim news agency reported.
“We have 11 of your citizens who are illegal aliens who we have been trying to return to your country. You suddenly SAY you want them back, so how about you send a charter plane over and we’ll return all 11 at once?” Cuccinelli tweeted.
On Monday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told reporters that he had announced in New York a year and a half ago that the “Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to swap all Iranian prisoners, who are in jail in the US or other countries under the US pressure, with all American prisoners…but the Americans gave no response.”