In slight progress on the Iran Nuclear Deal, Tehran agreed to cooperate with experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) regarding uranium particles discovered at several of its sites.
In return, signatories of the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action) dropped their censure plan against Iran.
Iran’s foreign ministry credited “intense diplomatic efforts” by Tehran and all other participants to its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers for stopping a European and American-backed resolution at the Board of Governors of the IAEA.
“Today’s development can maintain the path of diplomacy opened by Iran and the agency and create the grounds for the full implementation of commitments by all JCPOA parties,” foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said, referencing the JCPOA.
“Iran hopes that JCPOA participants can guarantee the full implementation of the JCPOA by all sides by using this opportunity and through serious cooperation.”
IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi announced in a news conference that it has come to an agreement with Iran to hold more technical talks in April in Tehran.
He said Iran has welcomed the nuclear watchdog’s offer to “engage in a focused and systematic effort” to discuss uranium particles found at several sites that for a time Iran had barred the IAEA from entering.
Additionally, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that the US had violated the 2015 Nuclear Deal and that the Biden Administration should take “practical steps” to rectify the situation, instead of making demands.
“The US, as the one who violated the deal, shall lift all sanctions and take practical steps in order to be able to return to the JCPOA,” Rouhani argued, using an acronym to for the landmark nuclear accord signed between Iran and six countries in 2015.
He said the Islamic Republic of Iran will reciprocate “action with action.”
“The return path to the JCPOA is straightforward, and if the US government is determined to return, there is no need for negotiations,” the president added.
The Biden administration has begun to criticize the so-called maximum pressure policy, with US State Department spokesman Ned Price saying the policy failed to “deliver a so-called better deal,” as promised by the Trump administration.
No concrete actions have been undertaken yet, however.
“Allow me to announce that the US’ unlawful unilateral measures have failed to bring the great Iranian nation to its knees,” Rouhani asserted, adding that Iran relied on its domestic capabilities to ward off the impact of US sanctions.
“This nation has relied on its domestic capabilities and has even made breakthroughs and great achievements including in the fight against COVID-19 and its impacts. A vivid example is the production of coronavirus vaccine by Iranian scientists, where we are prepared to extend cooperation with other countries, particularly ECO countries,” the Iranian president said.
Rouhani maintained that it was for Iran’s “wisdom” and “insight” that the JCPOA managed to survive the US efforts to destroy it.
“In the last four years, the international community has witnessed the US’ illegal approach and a full-scale economic war against Iran,” the chief executive said, adding, “These cruel and illegal sanctions have inflicted irreparable damage to Iran’s government and people.”
Rouhani also criticized other countries for failing to stand up to the US and its unilateral sanctions against Iran and other countries, who were suffering due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The great powers’ depriving other nations of fundamental rights and their disrespect for international organizations necessitate a response from like-minded countries, including through strengthening cooperation and creating a united front against these challenges,” he noted.
As such, progress is being made, but concessions on the side of the US appear to be needed in order for a path forward to open up.
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