Iran says US needs to show it wants nuclear deal revived

AFP , Wednesday 27 Jul 2022

Iran said Wednesday the US needs to show "in practise" that it wants a revival of the 2015 nuclear agreement, after an EU coordinator urged parties to accept a draft text of the deal.

Iran s top diplomat Hossein Amir-Abdollahian. AFP
Iran s top diplomat Hossein Amir-Abdollahian. AFP


"America always maintains that it wants an agreement, so this approach should be seen in the text of the agreement and in practise," Iran's top diplomat Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell in a phone conversation, according to Iran's foreign ministry.

"If America takes a realistic step toward finding a solution and reaching an agreement, a good agreement will be available to all parties," he added.

Borrell on Tuesday said he had submitted a draft text of the deal, warning parties to accept it or "risk a dangerous nuclear crisis, set against the prospect of increased isolation for Iran and its people."

"This text represents the best possible deal that I, as facilitator of the negotiations, see as feasible," the EU's top diplomat wrote in the Financial Times.

Amir-Abdollahian reacted to the proposal by saying that "Iran welcomes the continuation of the path of diplomacy and negotiation", his ministry noted.

The 2015 agreement gave Iran sanctions relief in exchange for curbs on its atomic programme to guarantee that it could not develop a nuclear weapon, something it has always denied seeking.

But the US' unilateral withdrawal from the accord in 2018 under then-president Donald Trump and Washington's reimposition of biting economic sanctions prompted Iran to begin rolling back on its own commitments.

Negotiations in Vienna began in April 2021 to restore the deal, but have stalled since March amid differences between Tehran and Washington on several issues.

The two sides negotiated indirectly through the European Union coordinator in a bid to bring the US back inside the deal and to lift sanctions on Iran, on the basis that Tehran would return to its nuclear commitments.

Borrell said the draft text includes "hard-won compromises by all sides" and "addresses, in precise detail, the sanctions lifting as well as the nuclear steps needed to restore" the 2015 pact.

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