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Iran’s fifth step in suspending nuclear commitments will not mean end to JCPOA: Araqchi

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araqchi
Press TV – January 7, 2020

A senior Iranian official says the country’s decision to take the fifth and final step in reducing its commitments under a landmark nuclear deal it clinched with major world powers in 2015 does not mean an end to the accord or Tehran’s withdrawal from it.

Speaking to reporters in Tehran on Tuesday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araqchi said the last step means that “we have reached a reasonable balance” in the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

“The US withdrawal from the JCPOA disrupted the balance of this international accord and now we think that we have reached a reasonable balance in the JCPOA after scaling back the nuclear commitments,” he added.

The Iranian government announced in a statement on Sunday that from now on, the country will observe no operational limitations on its nuclear industry, including with regard to the capacity and level of uranium enrichment, the amount of enriched materials as well as research and development.

“By taking the fifth step in reducing its commitment, the Islamic Republic of Iran eliminates the last key operational restriction it faced under the JCPOA, which is the limitation imposed on the number of centrifuges,” it said.

Araqchi, who is also a senior nuclear negotiator, further said the amount of enrichment would depend on the agenda of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) and the country’s requirements.

He reiterated that the Islamic Republic would continue to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and said, “We are ready to come back to the previous process whenever the opposite sides [of the nuclear deal] will be able to meet our demands and fulfill their commitments under the JCPOA.”

“It is possible to save the JCPOA if the opposite sides want,” the Iranian diplomat added.

In response to a question about the possibility of Europe triggering the JCPOA’s “dispute resolution mechanism,” also known as the trigger mechanism, whose activation can lead to the return of the UN sanctions on Iran, Araqchi said it only would accelerate the termination of the deal.

“As Iran acted wisely after the US withdrawal from the JCPOA, the other sides are also expected to behave prudently and refrain from escalating tensions,” he added.

US President Donald Trump, a stern critic of the historic deal, unilaterally pulled Washington out of the JCPOA in May 2018, and unleashed the “toughest ever” sanctions against the Islamic Republic in defiance of global criticism in an attempt to strangle the Iranian oil trade.

In response to the US unilateral move, Tehran has so far rowed back on its nuclear commitments four times in compliance with Articles 26 and 36 of the JCPOA, but stressed that its retaliatory measures will be reversible as soon as Europe finds practical ways to shield the mutual trade from the US sanctions.

Iran’s latest nuclear announcement coincided with a major escalation of tensions with Washington after the US assassination of Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), in a drone strike in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad early on Friday.

Iran has criticized the three European signatories to the JCPOA — Britain, France and Germany — for failing to salvage the pact by shielding Tehran’s economy from US sanctions.

January 7, 2020 - Posted by | Economics, Wars for Israel | , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. Iranian Journalist Begs U.S. Media: Don’t Fall for Iranian Propaganda

    https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/nicholas-fondacaro/2020/01/06By Nicholas Fondacaro | January 6, 2020 10:33 PM EST

    “Don’t believe Iranian propaganda about the mourning for [General Qasem] Soleimani.” That’s the message or plea from Iranian journalist and activist Masih Alinejad published by The Washington Post on Monday. Unfortunately, as NewsBusters reporting on the liberal media’s reaction to Soleimani’s demise has shown, they were not heeding her warning and were willingly becoming mouthpieces for the murderous regime.

    While the liberal media were running around and claiming Iranians were “united” against the United States by Soleimani’s death, they were made to look like fools when the facts of his barbarism were laid on the table.

    Alinejad began by recalling how the General was responsible for massacring his fellow countrymen after they protested the regime. “According to Reuters, more than 1,500 people were killed by security forces, including units of Soleimani’s Revolutionary Guard, and at least 7,000 have been arrested,” she reminded readers. “The Internet was shut down for five days. Tehran has yet to release official figures of its own, which suggests the death toll may have been even higher.”

    Apparently, those protesters also had “harsh words for Soleimani and his foreign adventures” including his support for radical Islamic terrorists. The families of those slain protestors had to pay money to get their loved one’s bodies returned and were barred from having public funerals. The military was even rolled out to break up some funerals. Seems like the liberal media don’t care about those funerals.

    /iranian-journalist-begs-us-media-dont-fall-iran-propaganda

    Like

    Comment by Leland Roth | January 7, 2020 | Reply


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