US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said this week he would be willing to appear on Iranian TV, and Iran has responded by offering him an interview with a reporter detained in the United States earlier this year.
“Our reporter Ms Marzieh Hashemi can go and interview [Pompeo] so that he can say what he intends to say,” government Rabiei said.
The spokesman said Pompeo had been “forced” into saying he was ready to appear on Iranian TV because of his counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif’s recent round of interviews with US media.
Rabiei said Iran does “not shy away from hearing what people say, [even though] what they did to our reporters… is an insult to both the media and discussions”.
Pompeo said Thursday in an interview with Bloomberg that he would “happily” go to Tehran and willingly appear on Iranian television to explain US reasoning behind its sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
Hashemi, a black Muslim convert who was born in the United States, works as an anchor for Iran’s English-language channel Press TV.
She was arrested in the US last January for 10 days. Following her release, Hashemi told The Guardian she was mistreated by US authorities as she was denied halal food and had hijab removed while held as ‘material witness’.