Iran says nothing less or more than US sanctions removal is acceptable
Tehran has ruled out the introduction of new commitments in the ongoing talks with the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal in the Austrian capital, saying nothing less or more than the removal of sanctions is acceptable.
“Whatever is taking place in Vienna is intended for the removal of sanctions. Neither will we accept anything less, nor will take on any nuclear commitments beyond what has been stated in the JCPOA,” Saeed Khatibzadeh told IRNA on Tuesday, using the 2015 nuclear deal’s official acronym, which stands for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
He stressed, “Subjects like step-by-step negotiations and new commitments have no place in our dialogues.”
Khatibzadeh said the Islamic Republic of Iran has entered the Vienna talks with a strong will and dispatched a fully prepared delegation to Austria to ensure the removal of US sanctions.
Iran and the five remaining parties to the JCPOA began the talks in Vienna in April with the aim of removing Washington’s unlawful sanctions against the Islamic Republic after the US voiced interest to return to the agreement.
The talks were paused after Iran’s presidential election in June and resumed on Monday.
Talks may be ‘on right track’
In his remarks, a day after the resumption of the Vienna talks, Khatibzadeh said the negotiations can be said to be “on the right track.”
Of course, he continued, provided that “the other side sincerely intends to work towards the removal of sanctions rather than wasting time, extending the duration of the talks, or inventing childish excuses.”
Former US president Donald Trump left the JCPOA in May 2018 and re-imposed the anti-Iran sanctions that the deal had lifted. He also placed additional sanctions on Iran under other pretexts not related to the nuclear case as part of his “maximum pressure” campaign.
The US administration of Joe Biden had said it is willing to compensate for Trump’s mistake and rejoin the deal, but it has shown an overriding propensity for maintaining the sanctions as a tool of pressure.
Tehran insists that all sanctions must first be removed in a verifiable manner before the Islamic Republic reverses its remedial measures.