State Dept Struggles to Explain Rouhani and Ayatollah Claims US is ‘Lying’ About Iran Deal Facts

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State Department spokesperson Jeff Rathke struggled to explain Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei comments that the United States is ‘lying’ about the Iran deal facts.

"Hours after the #talks, Americans offered a fact sheet that most of it was contrary to what was agreed. They always deceive & breach promises," Ayatollah Khamenei said on Twitter. President Rouhani retweeted these comments.

Iranian leaders said that the fact sheet released by the U.S. are not the terms of the agreed upon framework. For the past week, U.S. officials have said Iran will receive gradual sanction relief as Iran meets certain benchmarks of the deal. Iran contradicts this and insists that the agreed framework included the immediate removal of sanctions once a final deal is reached.

Rathke said the Iranians did not agree to the U.S. fact sheet.

"No. It wasn't a negotiated fact sheet," Rathke said. "That was released by the United States based on–you know, we told them what we were going to, you know, talk about the agreement publicly, but it wasn't a negotiated document."

Rathke was then asked whether the fact sheet reflected what occurred in the talks.

"Yeah," Rathke said. "Not for the document itself. It isn't like we had a process of negotiating that specific piece of paper. That's the point I was making. But that fact sheet reflects the understandings achieved at Lausanne."

Over the next few months, the Obama administration will negotiate with Iranian officials on a final deal. The deadline for the final deal is early July.

Associated Press reporter Matt Lee asked if the final deal would produce one fact sheet that everyone agrees on.

"I'm not going to speak to the final shape and form of the agreement," Rathke said.

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