Sanctions and nuclear deal can’t go together, Iran insists

June 23, 2018

TEHRAN - Ali Akbar Salehi, director of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, on Friday echoed Iran’s policy that it is not possible to preserve the 2015 nuclear deal while sanctions are being re-imposed.

“It is impossible to preserve the agreement if Iran will not be able to achieve its objectives from the deal,” Salehi said during a meeting at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs. 

“Remaining of the sanctions and preserving of the agreement is not possible,” the nuclear chief noted

He described the nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, as a “multilateral achievement” and preserving it after the U.S. withdrawal is a “test for the international community”.

During a meeting with Secretary General of European External Action Service (EEAS) Helga Schmid on Wednesday, Salehi said that Iran deems “unacceptable” the continuation of sanctions while Tehran honors the JCPOA, the official name for the international nuclear agreement.

After U.S. President Donald Trump officially withdrew from the JCPOA, Iran has warned the remaining parties to the nuclear agreement – the European Union, E3 (Germany, France and Britain), Russia and China – that if its interests are not guaranteed it will not remain in the deal.

On May 23, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei issued a set of demands from Europe to save the nuclear deal. He warned that Iran would restart its nuclear activities if they failed to act swiftly.

Ayatollah Khamenei said the JCPOA could only continue if the Europeans fulfill these conditions including: Promising not to ask Iran about its ballistic missile program or its regional activities; guaranteeing that Iran’s oil will continue to be sold; and having European banks guarantee financial transactions with Iran.

Under the agreement, which went into force in January 2016, Iran lowered its nuclear activities in exchange for termination of economic and financial sanctions.

NA/PA

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