Iran slams IAEA resolution, says still seeks ‘strong’ deal in Vienna
Iran has once again criticized the Western-drafted resolution passed against Tehran’s nuclear program during the recent meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s Board of Governors.
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said the Islamic Republic still insists on reaching a “good, strong and lasting” deal with the P4+1 group of countries.
"We have put a new political package and a new initiative on the table. Although the American side accepted the initiative, it also insisted on passing the resolution,” Iran’s top diplomat said in a joint press conference with his visiting Pakistani counterpart Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in Tehran on Tuesday.
He added that Iran would never evade dialog with the P4+1 group of countries on the revival of the 2015 deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
“Iran will not deviate from the logic of diplomacy and negotiations to reach a good, strong and lasting agreement and believes that diplomacy is the best way to reach a final point,” he said.
The top Iranian diplomat emphasized that the US, along with its three European allies, submitted the resolution in order to exert more pressure on Tehran and obtain concessions in indirect talks.
Since April last year, the Iranian negotiating team has been involved in marathon talks with the other remaining parties to the JCPOA – Britain, France, Germany, China, and Russia – with the aim of bringing the US back into the deal and lifting its sanctions against Tehran.
However, the Vienna talks have been on hold since March as Washington insists on its refusal to undo its past wrongs through measures such as removing Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) from its list of foreign terrorist organizations.
In yet another blow to the bleak prospects of reviving the JCPOA, the US, France, Britain, and Germany spearheaded a resolution at the IAEA’s Board of Governors on Wednesday, which accused Iran of not cooperating with the UN nuclear watchdog.
Iran has denounced the resolution and blamed the US and its three European allies for the crisis created over its nuclear program, which was under an unprecedented level of inspections before Washington withdrew from the JCPOA.
In the presser, Amir-Abdollahian said during the talks with the P4+1 group of countries in Vienna and exchanges of messages with Washington over the past months, Iran has proved that it supports dialog and rationale.
In response to the US-E3 resolution, the Islamic Republic has started to increase its nuclear activities and has informed the UN nuclear agency of the issue through the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, he added.
The Iranian foreign minister emphasized that the country would maintain its contacts with the European Union foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, and his envoy to Iran talks, Enrique Mora.