MP warns Europe to fulfil JCPOA duties or face Iran’s next step

October 11, 2019

TEHRAN – Chairman of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee Mojtaba Zonnour has warned that Iran would take the fourth step in reducing its commitments to the 2015 nuclear agreement of the JCPOA should the other side continue to fail to fulfil its obligations under the accord.

“If Europe fulfils its obligations during the 60-day deadline, the Islamic Republic will return to its obligations under the framework of Barjam (JCPOA),” Mehr on Friday quoted Zonnour as saying.

“Otherwise, the fourth step in reducing Iran’s commitments to Barjam will be taken more forcefully and decisively,” he added.

Washington withdrew from the internationally-endorsed nuclear deal with Iran on May 8, 2018, reimposed the toughest-ever sanctions against the country and started a plan to zero down Tehran’s oil sales.

Under the nuclear agreement, Tehran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of economic and financial sanctions.

Following the U.S. withdrawal, Iran remained fully committed to the JCPOA for a year, but announced on the anniversary of Washington’s bellicose move that its “strategic patience” is over and would gradually reduce its commitments to the deal at 60-day intervals, which were designed as deadlines for Europe to protect Tehran’s interests under the deal.

So far, Iran has taken three steps in that regard.

In the first step, Iran removed cap on its nuclear deal stockpile which was limited to 300 kilograms enriched to purity of 3.67 percent. In the second step, which started in July 7, Iran started enriching nuclear fuel to more than 3.67 percent. And in the third step, which fell on September 6, Iran removed ban on nuclear research and development (R&D).

Tehran has repeatedly said its measures will be revered as soon as Europe finds practical ways to shield the Iranian economy from unilateral U.S. sanctions.

Zonnour said Iran has many options to choose from in the fourth step.

He emphasized that Europe should pay the price if it wants to salvage the nuclear accord.

“Europe is capable to do this, but instead it takes steps in line with U.S. goals, and accordingly it does not have the necessary will to preserve Barjam,” the top MP added.

Pointing to remarks by U.S. officials that they would not lift the sanctions before any dialog with Iran, Zonnour said the Americans proved their deceptive and lying nature to the world by exiting the JCPOA and today nobody has any doubt that the United States does not honor its “commitments”.

The U.S. has announced that it’s been actively adopting a “maximum pressure” policy in order to force Tehran into entering a new round of negotiations.

Iran, however, has ruled out the possibility of talks as long as sanctions are in place, saying Washington’s “maximum pressure” has produced “maximum resistance” from Tehran.

Tehran has also described the sanctions as an act of “economic war” and “economic terrorism” against the Iranian nation.

MH/PA

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