Resignation of Iranian FM Zarif is not yet accepted - UPDATED

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26 February 2019

Foreign Minister Javad Zarif's resignation has not yet been approved by President Rouhani, a foreign ministry spokesman has said, ONA reports citing local media.

"As was announced today by the presidential administration, this resignation has not yet been accepted," spokesman Bahram Ghasemi wrote in his Telegram page on Tuesday.

Attempting to quell rumours about the possible reasons for Zarif's resignation request, Ghasemi urged people not to believe the various analyses and interpretations on its causes. "All interpretations and analysis around the reasons behind the resignation of Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, beyond what he posted on his Instagram account, are not accurate…" he said, according to Fars News.

Earlier, a UNHRC spokesman confirmed to Sputnik that Zarif had cancelled his planned Tuesday speech at the UN Human Rights Council. On Monday, an aide to the foreign minister said foreign ministry personnel had been unaware of his plans to resign.

Zarif, one of the architects of the Iran nuclear deal, the landmark 2015 international treaty committing Tehran not to develop nuclear weapons in exchange for sanctions relief, announced his plans to quit on Monday, thanking officials and ordinary Iranians for their "generosity" and apologizing for his "inability to continue" his service.

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