Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke at the Council on Foreign Relations on June 28, 2023. He addressed recent reports that the United States and Iran are close to reaching a new nuclear deal in exchange for sanctions relief.
Blinken denied these reports, saying, "There is no agreement in the offing, even as we continue to be willing to explore diplomatic paths…We'll see by their actions," He warned Iran against taking actions that would further escalate tensions in the Middle East. Blinken said that the United States is "prepared to go back to the negotiating table" with Iran but that Iran must first "show that it is serious about returning to compliance".
Regarding prospects of normalization between Israel and Saudi Arabia, Blinken - who traveled to Saudi Arabia earlier in June - said "Both Saudi Arabia and Israel, of course, are interested in the prospect of normalization…It is incredibly challenging, hard, not something that can happen overnight, but it's also a real prospect and one that we're working on".