Iran and the US exchanged messages through Swiss diplomatic channel

# 06:29
9 January 2020

The US and Iran have exchanged recent messages via Swiss diplomatic channel, according to the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a source familiar with the channel, APA reports citing CNN.

The Swiss statement implied that both sides were involved in the message sending, though it does not detail which country triggered the messaging or if the conversation is ongoing. The source did not specify how recent messages were exchanged.

This diplomatic channel is always available and used regularly for consular issues, and it was relied on heavily during the prisoner exchange late last year. But in a crisis situation, the use of the channel is much more noteworthy, explained a source familiar with the channel. 

Here is the statement, from the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

 “Switzerland is deeply concerned about the heavy tensions between the U.S. and Iran and the latest cycle of violent confrontations in Iraq. We call on all sides to exercise maximum restraint and to avoid any further escalation. Switzerland stands ready to support initiatives of the international community that seek de-escalation in the region.

The diplomatic communication channel between the U.S. and Iran that is provided by Switzerland in the framework of the protective power mandate continues to operate. Switzerland confirms that several messages were transmitted through this channel.”