IAEA chief holds talks in Tehran

February 21, 2021 - 18:15

TEHRAN – Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Rafael Grossi held talks with Iranian officials to discuss the latest issues related to the cooperation between Iran and the UN body.

Grossi, who had requested to visit Iran ahead of the cessation of the implementation of the Additional Protocol to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), arrived in Iran on Saturday night. He met with Ali Akbar Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), on Sunday.

The AEOI said in a statement on Sunday that the UN nuclear watchdog chief held negotiations with Iranian officials on coordinating the simultaneous implementation of the Iranian nuclear law adopted in December and the Agency’s safeguards activities.

The nuclear law, officially called “Strategic Action to Lift Sanctions and Protect the Nation’s Rights,” stipulates that the Iranian government should take certain nuclear measures such as raising the level of uranium enrichment to 20% and suspending the voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol in few months if the Western parties failed to honor their obligations under the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

The sixth article of the law clearly stipulates that if the remaining parties to the JCPOA – Germany, France, China, Russia and the UK- failed to facilitate Iran’s oil exports and the return of Iranian oil revenues in two months, the Iranian government would be obligated to stop inspections beyond the IAEA safeguards, including the voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol, which allows unannounced and intensive inspections of nuclear sites.

Iran will implement the nuclear law which obligates the government to halt implementing the Additional Protocol on February 23, Kazem Gharibabadi, Iran's Ambassador and Permanent Representative to international organizations in Vienna, said on February 15.

“Act of Parliament will be executed on time (23 Feb) and the IAEA has been informed today to ensure the smooth transition to a new course in due time. After all, goodwill brings about goodwill!” Ambassador Gharibabadi tweeted.

Grossi requested a visit to Iran immediately after the country announced that it will implement the law.

The IAEA has said that Grossi will seek to find a solution for the UN nuclear watchdog to continue verification activities in Iran.

“Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi will visit Tehran on Saturday for discussions with senior Iranian officials in order to find a mutually agreeable solution for the IAEA to continue essential verification activities in the country,” the IAEA said in a statement.

Grossi expressed hope that he will find an agreeable solution that will ensure the continuation of cooperation between Iran and the IAEA.

"Tomorrow I travel to Tehran to meet with senior Iranian officials to find a mutually agreeable solution, compatible with Iranian law, so that the IAEA can continue essential verification activities in Iran," Grossi said in a tweet on Friday evening. “Looking forward to success – this is in everybody’s interest,” he continued.

Iran has repeatedly said that it wants the U.S. to lift sanctions. Tehran has made it clear that if Washington wants Iran to fully implement the JCPOA, then it must lift all the sanctions the Trump administration slapped on Iran.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Friday that the U.S. should lift all sanctions if it wants Iran to reverse its nuclear measures.

“U.S. acknowledged Pompeo’s claims regarding Resolution 2231 had no legal validity. We agree. In compliance with 2231: U.S. unconditionally & effectively lift all sanctions imposed, re-imposed or re-labeled by Trump. We will then immediately reverse all remedial measures. Simple: #CommitActMeet,” Zarif said in a tweet on Friday.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a recent telephone conversation with his Swiss counterpart Guy Parmelin that it’s up to the U.S. to make the first move toward reviving the JCPOA.

“The ball is in the U.S. court now. When it lifts illegal sanctions in practice, everything will return to the right path,” the Iranian president pointed out.

Rouhani reiterated the same position in another telephone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, saying that Europe should prove in practice that it wants to preserve the JCPOA.

President Rouhani stated that if Europe is really seeking to preserve the JCPOA and realize its goals it must prove it in practice. “The only way to protect the JCPOA is the cancellation of inhuman U.S. sanctions,” he continued.

SM/PA

Comments

  • 2021-02-21 21:20
    Why Iran would sell 250 large oil tankers worth of oil and allow S Korea to get that far behind in payments. Who is responsible for this stupidity. Iran should of cut S Korea off at 25 large oil tankers. $ 700 million behind in payments, not $7 billion.

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