Rouhani says Iran will soon take third step to reduce nuclear commitments

September 4, 2019

TEHRAN – President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that Iran will take the third step in reducing its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

“Despite settling main part of differences with the Europeans, we have not reached a final agreement yet. So, Iran will take the third step of reducing its nuclear commitments and the details of the step will be announced today or tomorrow,” Rouhani said during a cabinet meeting.

He added, “For example, if we had differences on 20 issues, now we have differences on three issues. However, we have not reached the final point. It is unlikely that we could reach a final agreement today or tomorrow…. So, we will take the third step and its details will be announced.” 

Rouhani noted that the third step is very important, saying the Atomic Energy Organization will speed up its activities based on the third step.

Rouhani said that the third step is reversible if any agreement is reached.

“While taking the third step, we will continue to hold talks and if we reach an agreement, we will be open to negotiate and logic,” he said.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araghchi, who was on a tour of Europe, also said on Wednesday that it is very unlikely that the Europeans be able to take an effective step before September 7.

So far, Iran has taken two steps in reducing its nuclear commitments: increasing its stockpile of enriched uranium beyond the 300 kilograms allowed under the JCPOA, and refining nuclear fuel to the purity level of 4.5 percent as the Europeans missed.

Iran took these steps one year after the Trump administration abandoned the JCPOA and imposed the harshest ever sanctions on Tehran. 

In a statement on May 8, Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) announced that its “strategic patience” is over as the remaining members of the JCPOA, especially the Europeans, have failed to honor their obligations and protect Iran from sanctions effect.

In his remarks on Wednesday, Rouhani described Iran’s one-year strategic patience as a “wise” decision.

NA/PA
 

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