At a time when U.S. pressure on Iran is increasing, the latter is trying to be flexible with the former by declaring its willingness to exchange prisoners.
Ali Rabie was quoted by the Online news website as saying that Iran is ready to conduct a full prisoner exchange with the United States.
"We are ready to exchange Iranian and American prisoners, and we are ready to discuss this issue," he said, adding that Washington has not responded to our call yet.
"We are concerned about the safety and health of Iranians in prison, and we hold America responsible for the safety of Iranians amid the new coronavirus outbreak," he said.
"There is no need for a broker between Iran and America in order to exchange prisoners," Rabie was quoted as saying.
The New York Times quoted a senior Iranian official and a spokesman for a U.S. Navy veteran as saying that negotiations between the two countries were about exchanging the release of the American warrior held by Iranian authorities and an Iranian-American doctor detained by the United States.
White's family spokesman Jonathan Franks said he was also informed that negotiations were under way between the two sides despite the lack of further details, and Franks said, "If the Iranians have an agreement on the table, we would like the administration to take him and bring Michael home."
Iran is holding at least four Americans, including at least three of Iranian origin, while the United States is holding 24 Iranian citizens, according to Iranian officials.
Tensions between Iran and the United States have intensified with the announcement by Trump's administration of withdrawal from the 2018 nuclear deal, the imposition of tough sanctions on Tehran, and the increased hostility with the killing of Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani in a U.S. strike in early 2020.
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