Araghchi says Iran will never renegotiate nuclear deal

September 4, 2019

TEHRAN - Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araghchi on Wednesday insisted on Tehran’s long-held policy that that Iran will never renegotiate the 2015 nuclear deal, officially known as the JCPOA.

“From the Islamic Republic of Iran’s viewpoint, the JCPOA will not be renegotiated, however, implementation of the JCPOA can be subject of talks,” he told reporters in Slovenia.

Pointing to his talks in Paris, he said that the talks revolved around Iran’s oil sale and ways to receive the money.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran has announced it will return to full implementation of the JCPOA if it will be able to sell its oil and receive its income without limitation. France’s initiative revolves around this,” he said.

France has proposed offering Iran about $15 billion in credit lines until year-end if Tehran comes fully back into compliance with the nuclear deal, a move that hinges on Washington not blocking it, according to Reuters.

Araghchi added, “Iran is ready to hold talks with the remaining parties to the nuclear deal after receiving $15 billion, however, the fact is that there are different views on agenda of these talks.”

‘Iran to take third step of reducing nuclear commitments on September 7’

Araghchi also predicted that it is very unlikely that the Europeans be able to take an effective step before September 7, saying Iran will take the third step in reducing nuclear commitments on this day.

Iranian and French experts held intensive talks in Paris on Monday at expert level, studying ways to preserve the nuclear deal.

The meeting, which lasted over 10 hours, was chaired by Araghchi.

According to Iran’s Foreign Ministry, both sides reviewed details of President Emmanuel Macron’s initiative to save the JCPOA, following phone calls with his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani, Press TV reported.

Macron’s plan — which he separately discussed in detail with U.S. President Donald Trump and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif — reportedly included a “softening” of economic sanctions against Tehran in exchange for some liabilities.

The initiative, according to an earlier report by Bloomberg, will allow Iran to sell certain amounts of oil in exchange for fully implementing the JCPOA.

On May 8, exactly one year after the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA, Tehran began reducing its commitments to the agreement at bi-monthly intervals.

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 enriching nuclear fuel to the purity level of 4.5 percent as the Europeans missed a 60-day deadline to devise a concrete mechanism to protect the country from the U.S. sanctions.

However, Iran has announced if the European Union as a signatory to the deal protects it from the sanctions effect it will reverse its decision.

NA/PA

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