Europeans slow to save nuclear deal: Iran

November 9, 2018 - 18:13

TEHRAN - Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi has said that Europeans have been slower than Iran expected to save the 2015 nuclear deal after the U.S. exited the multilateral agreement and ordered reimposition of sanctions on Iran.

“It is a reality that the Europeans have moved slower than we expected. The good political stance they adopted is another reality. They have not prepared practical mechanisms yet and have not fulfilled our expectations yet,” he told the Young Journalists Club in an interview published on Friday.

According to Bloomberg, the European Union announced on November 7 that work “has accelerated” on a so-called special purpose vehicle (SPV) to help avoid the U.S. administration’s reimposed sanctions on Iran.

“The work on setting up the SPV, or special purpose vehicle, is continuing and it has actually accelerated,” Maja Kocijancic, EU spokeswoman for foreign affairs, told reporters in Brussels without elaborating. 

The bloc is seeking to use the SPV to help maintain the economic benefits promised in the 2015 nuclear deal flowing to Iran,

Araqchi, who was heavily involved with diplomats from the European Union, Germany and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council in crafting the nuclear agreement, said that the EU mechanism has “technical, financial and legal details” which take time to make ready.

He added that expert-level talks were held in Vienna on Wednesday on the SPV mechanism.

Araqchi also said that the mechanism has complexities and expressed hope that it will be ready soon.

The mechanism is designed to circumvent the sanctions, under which Washington can cut off any bank that facilitates oil transactions with Iran.

France, Germany, Britain and the European Union issued a joint statement on November 2 condemning the U.S. move in reimposing sanctions on Iran and vowed to protect European companies doing “legitimate” business with Tehran.

The statement read that Europe will also seek to “maintain financial channels operational with Iran and to ensure the continuation of Iranian oil and gas exports”.

‘Iran not to be influenced by Pompeo’s provocations’

Araqchi also said that Iran will not be influenced by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s “provocations”.

Speaking on “Fox News Sunday”, Pompeo said, “We’re confident that Iranians will not make that decision,” when he was asked what the administration would do if the Iranians restart their nuclear program.

Araqchi said that Iran will remain in the nuclear deal as long as the agreement is beneficial to the country.

Iran will not spare one moment if the country sees leaving the nuclear deal is more beneficial, he said.