Hardliners are sabotaging goal to lift sanctions: Rouhani

"I hope the minority that is trying to disrupt this path repent and stop these actions (...) the government knows how and has the capability to bring the sanctions to an end."

"The Americans have announced this clearly, not once but multiple times, that the path the last (U.S.) administration took was wrong and the maximum pressure policy has failed. And they have repeated this many times and have repeatedly said that they want to return to the path of commitment to the JCPOA. Although it is clear that simply stating this is not enough for us, we are waiting for action."

Iran's hardliners say U.S. sanctions are proof that Rouhani's policy of reaching out to enemies was a failure.

A delay in progress on the nuclear issue could hurt the chances of a moderate succeeding Rouhani, although the final decision on any diplomatic initiative would be taken by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei rather than the elected president.