US embassy cables: British envoy tutors US on negotiating with Iran

13.(C) Ask a lot of questions, always put the ball back in their court. Doing so will encourage internal discussion and debate in Tehran, as well as put pressure on them to deviate from their prepared script. Wrong foot them by saying something unexpected to try to take them off script. Focus on accountability, asking for clarifications of actions that contradict their stated commitments. Keep your message clear, including redlines, and do not be too subtle.



14.(C) Despite their rhetoric, Iranians understand their weaknesses include a lack of allies and foreign investment.



15.(C) Iran is very sensitive to press coverage that makes them look weak. At the same time, the IRIG has a &high threshold for embarrassment8 when they are accused of illicit activities. After the talks, the IRIG will seek to present the exchange as &businesslike,8 with the US and Iran on equal footing, where the IRIG &gave nothing away.8

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