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Spokesman: Iran Ready to Speed Up Enrichment if US Breaches N. Deal

10 January 2018 16:35

 

Spokesman of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi warned of the country’s reciprocal measures, including acceleration of uranium enrichment, in case Washington discards the 2015 nuclear deal.

“Contradictory reports surface on the endorsement or non-endorsement of the sanctions waivers by the US president and any of which will have different effects; but if the sanctions suspension are not extended, that would violate the nuclear deal and naturally, the Islamic Republic of Iran will take the necessary action,” Kamalvandi said in an interview with the state TV on Wednesday.

He warned of Iran’s reciprocal measures immediately after the US president’s possible reluctance to sign the waivers. He also implied that Tehran would decrease cooperation with the UN nuclear agency.

Kamalvandi, meantime, underscored that Iran will remain committed to the undertakings that it had taken up under the safeguards agreement before the nuclear deal was struck.

His remarks came after AEOI Head Ali Akbar Salehi warned against the negative consequences of violating the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) by the US, and said that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) should take serious measures in this regard.

“The Islamic Republic may reconsider its cooperation with the UN nuclear agency in case of a US non-compliance with the landmark multilateral nuclear agreement reached between Iran and the Group 5+1 (the US, Russia, China, France and Britain plus Germany) in 2015,” Salehi said in a telephone conversation with IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano on Monday.

He reiterated that if the United States does not implement its commitments under the JCPOA, the Islamic Republic of Iran will take decisions that can affect its current cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The US president delivered an anti-Iran speech on October 13, in which he refused to certify that Iran was complying with the terms of the JCPOA, reached under his predecessor, Barack Obama, and warned that he might ultimately terminate the agreement.

During his speech at the UN General Assembly on September 19, Trump described the JCPOA as “the worst and most one-sided transaction Washington has ever entered into”, a characterization he often used during his presidential campaign.

Trump must decide by mid-January whether to continue waiving US sanctions on Iran under the terms of the JCPOA.

Iran and the Group 5+1 signed the nuclear agreement on July 14, 2015 and started implementing it on January 16, 2016.

Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi warned on Monday about possible withdrawal of the United States from the landmark nuclear deal.

“The US president has taken many actions over the past year to destroy the JCPOA and it is even possible that the JCPOA would be dismantled in the next few days through measures he seeks to take,” the Iranian diplomat said.

Araqchi further expressed Iran’s readiness for any scenario vis-à-vis the US decision on remaining committed to the JCPOA or pulling out of it.

Since the JCPOA Implementation, the IAEA has been verifying and monitoring Iran’s compliance with its nuclear-related commitments under the nuclear deal and has consistently verified the Islamic Republic’s compliance.

In a meeting with the IAEA chief in Tehran in October, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani stressed the importance of maintaining the independence and impartiality of the agency and said Iran seeks to boost long-term cooperation with it.

Rouhani also emphasized the significance of showing respect for international regulations and treaties, saying Iran had repeatedly announced that it would not be the first country to walk away from the JCPOA, saying, “We will remain committed to the JCPOA as long as we are able to enjoy the benefits mentioned in it.”

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