IranMiddle East

Iran’s Nuclear Chief: Negotiations Should Lead to Full Removal of Sanctions, Accusations

Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Mohammad Eslami said on Monday that the Vienna talks are aimed at clearing all allegations about Tehran's nuclear activities as well as permanent lifting of all sanctions imposed by the United States.

“The basis of the negotiations was to repel accusations and eliminate excuses from the enemies constantly publishing fake news and documents against Iran,” Eslami told reportes in the Western Iranian province of Lorestan during the inauguration ceremony of several construction projects.

The AEOI head added that the talks’ goal is to lift the sanctions permanently, so the country can reap the economic benefits of the agreement.

On Saturday, Eslami said that Tehran’s approach in negotiations with the world powers entails a complete removal of all sanctions imposed by Washington. He added the Iranian negotiating team in the Vienna talks “has stood up against the other side and, while maintaining the red lines, has put canceling the sanctions as its priority”.

Efforts to salvage the the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) should put Iran in the path of trade exchanges, progress and development without the current disturbances, the AEOI head continued.

Iranian officials say the administration of President Joe Biden has yet done nothing but hollow promises to lift sanctions against Tehran, stressing the need for complete removal of embargos and verification by Iran.

In mid-August, Iran offered its response to the proposals which the European Union (EU) and the US announced they had received and were assessing. After submitting its response, Tehran urged Washington to show “realism and flexibility” in order to reach an agreement. However, it took almost ten days for the Biden administration to submit its response to Iran’s comments on the EU draft. On Wednesday, Tehran announced it has received a response from Washington to the European Union’s draft proposals regarding the JCPOA and started carefully reviewing the United States answer.

Iran stresses that although some progress has been made, there are still outstanding issues that need to be resolved before a final deal could be attained.

Before submiting the final conclusion to the EU, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian urged the United States to be flexible and realistic to let the negotiations yield fruit, and warned that Tehran has its own “Plan B” and it will go into effect if Washington fails to make a political decision to revive the 2015 nuclear deal.

“We also have our own Plan B, but this issue must be resolved through talks,” he stated, referred to the US claim that it has a Plan B in case the talks fail.

The foreign minister noted that if the US acts realistically and flexibly, Tehran and the other sides will reach a deal in the coming days.

Iran and the five remaining parties to the nuclear deal have held several rounds of negotiations since April last year to restore the agreement, which was unilaterally abandoned by Donald Trump in May 2018.

In quitting the agreement, Trump restored sanctions on Iran as part of what he called the “maximum pressure” campaign against the country. Those sanctions are being enforced to this day by the Biden administration, even though it has repeatedly acknowledged that the policy has been a mistake and a failure.

Iranian officials say the ball is in the US’ court, and the Biden administration should assure Tehran that it will not repeat Trump’s past mistakes.

Iranian officials have also criticized Washington for raising excessive demands from Tehran during the nuclear talks, and blocking efforts to reach an agreement on the JCPOA. They emphasized the Tehran’s will to reach a good, strong and lasting agreement, and stressed that the US should lift unilateral sanctions, and assure Iran that it will not repeat its past mistakes.

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