Iranian officials hoped to hold talks with the Trump government last month following the release of a permanent resident in the United States, but were rejected by US officials who, according to Reuters reports, considered the gesture insignificant.
Several sources reported to the news agency that the Iranian government ordered the release of Lebanese businessman Nizar Zakka in June, hoping to resume talks with the Trump government over the Iranian nuclear program and sanctions.
These talks with a US official never happened to tell the intelligence service that the release of Zakka for the Trump administration was a "missed opportunity" to ease tensions in the Persian Gulf.
"This was seen as a de-escalation step from their side, which they obviously expected to somehow reciprocate from the American side," a second source told Reuters, adding that the move was intended as a "goodwill gesture" by Iran. [1
"If Iran wants to reduce tension and get involved It should make a humanitarian gesture with the United States government, such as the release of one of the innocent American citizens whom it holds hostage. "
A senior government official told the news service last week that the Trump administration is confident that more US prisoners could be released if Iran is serious about tensions between the two countries after a series of incidents involving the US and have drawn Iran near the war.
"We are encouraged by the news that the Lebanese citizen Nizar Zakka has been released by the Iranian regime and hopes that this is a positive sign for Americans who are unjustly imprisoned in Iran," the government said.
Tensions between Iran and the US have been widening for weeks after two oil tankers accused by the US of Iranian forces were attacked and a US spy drone was destroyed, claiming that the White House had been flown over international aircraft Waters at the time of launch.
Iran denied participation in the tanker attack and countered that the drone was shot down in Iranian airspace.