UN urges US to lift anti-Iran sanctions in line with JCPOA
The United Nations has called on the United States to lift sanctions against Iran in line with the 2015 multilateral nuclear deal, which Washington has abandoned, and extend waivers regarding oil trade with the Islamic Republic, amid a diplomatic process in Vienna to revitalize the troubled agreement.
UN Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo made the remarks on Tuesday as she briefed the Security Council on the implementation of Resolution 2231, which endorsed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
“I appeal to the United States to lift or waive its sanctions as outlined in the plan and extend the waivers regarding the trade in oil with the Islamic Republic of Iran,” she said.
“Also important is the extension of US waivers regarding certain civilian nuclear-related activities,” she added, stressing that waiver extensions were also needed for exchanging enriched uranium out of Iran for natural uranium.
Former US president Donald Trump unilaterally 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.
Following a year of strategic patience, Iran decided to let go of some of the restrictions on its nuclear energy program, resorting to its legal rights under the JCPOA, which grants a party the right to suspend its contractual commitments in case of a non-performance by the other side.
The US administration of President Joe Biden had voiced a willingness to compensate for Trump’s mistake and rejoin the deal, but it has retained the sanctions as leverage.
Envoys from Iran and the P4+1 group of countries — Britain, France, Russia, and China plus Germany — began negotiations in the Austrian capital in April in a bid to resurrect the JCPOA.
The seventh round of the Vienna talks, the first under Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi’s administration, started on November 29 after a five-month pause.
Days into the renewed talks, Iran presented two draft texts which address, separately, the removal of US bans and Iran’s return to its nuclear commitments under the JCPOA. Tehran also said it was preparing a third draft text on the verification of the sanctions removal.