Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and his Swedish counterpart Ann Linde held a phone conversation on Tuesday to discuss the latest international developments, regional issues, and bilateral ties, including consular relations, between Tehran and Stockholm, Press TV reported.
During the call, Zarif referred to the United States’ unlawful and unfair sanctions against the Islamic Republic and criticized European countries for their failure to fulfill their commitments under the nuclear deal, officially named the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
He also told Linde that Sweden must not sacrifice its own independence and sovereignty in the face of the United States' bullying policies.
The JCPOA was reached on July 14, 2015 between Iran and six world powers then known as the P5+1 — which included the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany.
In May 2018, US President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled his country out of the JCPOA and re-instated the anti-Iran sanctions that had been lifted under the accord.
Under US pressure, Europe has so far been unable to deliver on its contractual obligation to undo the negative impact of Washington’s illegal bans on the Islamic Republic.
The US withdrawal and the ensuing European failure to protect its business ties with Tehran prompted Iran to suspend parts of its commitments under the agreement.
Following Tuesday’s telephone conversation, Linde tweeted that she had spoken with Zarif “in light of reports that Iran may have planned to enforce a death penalty” against Ahmadreza Djalali, a dual Iranian-Swedish national.
“Sweden condemns the death penalty and works to ensure that the verdict against Djalali is not enforced,” she wrote.
Djalali, a medical doctor and lecturer at the Karolinska Institute in the Swedish capital, was arrested in Iran in 2016 and later convicted of espionage.
He was charged with providing information to Israeli regime to help its rulers assassinate Iranian nuclear scientists. Iran’s Supreme Court in 2017 upheld the death sentence against Djalali.
Reacting to Linde’s tweet, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said, “Unfortunately, the Swedish authorities’ information on the situation of Mr. Ahmadreza Djalali, who is in prison due to security crimes, is incomplete and incorrect.”
“As Dr. Zarif...explained to Ms. Linde, Iran’s Judiciary is independent and any meddling in the issuance or execution of judicial rulings is unacceptable,” he added.
Tehran says dual citizenship does not grant an Iranian national immunity from Iranian law.