FM says Iran injected gas into centrifuges in response to U.S. sanctions

August 2, 2022 - 17:15

TEHRAN — Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian said on Tuesday that Iran injected hexafluoride gas into hundreds of new generation centrifuges on Monday night in response to the new U.S. coercive actions against the Islamic Republic.

Speaking on the sidelines of an Islamic human rights and human dignity ceremony, Amir Abdollahian also said in the past weeks, while Iran was preparing for a new round of negotiations, the American side suddenly proposed a censure resolution against Iran at the International Atomic Energy Agency Board of Governors with the aim of gaining concessions from Iran at the negotiating table.

“We were surprised that while during those days we were constantly receiving messages from Joe Biden through intermediaries that the U.S. has good intentions and is serious about returning to the (nuclear) agreement,” the tabled the draft for the resolution, the minister lamented.

However, he added, “We gave our decisive answer to the American side.”

He then pointed out that European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, who acts as the coordinator of the JCPOA revival talks, recently presented an initiative and a text for all parties, including Iran, P4+1, and the United States, but “while all sides in the capitals are reviewing the text to gather around in the negotiating table in Vienna” the U.S. on Monday took another move against efforts to revive the JCPOA, the official name for the 2015 nuclear deal.

The United States on Monday imposed sanctions on Chinese and other firms it said helped to sell tens of millions of dollars in Iranian oil and petrochemical products to East Asia. The U.S. Treasury and the U.S. State Departments imposed sanctions on a total of six companies, four based in Hong Kong, one in Singapore, and one in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in actions that were announced in separate statements.

Amir Abdollahian called the new U.S. sanctions moves “irrational measures”.

“These are irrational measures and this is an ineffective sanctionomania by Joe Biden, Blinken and Robert Malley. They themselves mentioned that Trump's maximum pressure campaign has failed. Even Borrell himself mentioned the failure of Trump's maximum pressure campaign against Iran in a recent article and then put forward his own summarized ideas, but again we are witnessing the madness of imposing sanctions, which of course is only a show and has no tangible effect,” the foreign minister remarked.

“I would like to point out that in response to this American action, Iran injected hexafluoride gas into hundreds of new generation centrifuges from Monday based on the decision that was made,” he underlined.

According to the foreign minister, Americans should not imagine that they can get concessions from Iran at the negotiation table through such actions.

“They must put aside exaggeration, as we are people of logic and negotiation, and we are serious about reaching a strong agreement, but if the American side wants to continue this path, our hands will never be tied,” Amir Abdollahian cautioned.

“Iraqi leaders can solve their domestic conflicts with their tact”

In response to a question about the developments in Iraq, the foreign minister said, “Iraqi leaders have the necessary competence and tact to solve the problem that has emerged in Iraq, and considering that any conflict inside Iraq is Iraq's red line, the role of authority and tact and the unity of political leaders is the most important factor in solving Iraq's internal problems.”

The minister was referring to disputes between rival Shia factions over nominating a new prime minister.

"It is shameful for the West and Sweden to act on claims made by a terrorist group”

Responding to a question about the latest steps taken by the foreign ministry to follow up on the situation of Hamid Nouri, an Iranian citizen who was unfairly sentenced to life imprisonment in Sweden, the foreign minister said that Nouri was sentenced unfairly by a Swedish court.

“In my last phone call with the Swedish foreign minister, I announced that Sweden should not act on the basis of the baseless claims of a fossilized terrorist group called Mojahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO), and it should be a shame for the West and Sweden to base their claims on the accusations of a terrorist group. They said that they had assassinated 17,000 of our citizens in the 1980s,” Iran’s top diplomat lamented.

He then noted that the foreign ministry will continue its serious legal and political pursuits to pursue the rights of Hamid Nouri and other nationals who are in prison in the U.S. and other countries.

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