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Iran nuclear chief: US should remove all sanctions to resume JCPOA revival talks

Iran’s nuclear chief says the United States should remove all sanctions it has imposed on the Islamic Republic in order for the stalled negotiations on the revival of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), to resume.

Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Mohammad Eslami told Japanese public broadcaster NHK that the US needed to remove all its sanctions and quickly come back to the agreement.

He explained that Iran will take action step by step, in accordance with what the US does.

Eslami said the US has failed to implement the duties and obligations it agreed to under the JCPOA.

The US, under former president Donald Trump, left the JCPOA in 2018 and returned the sanctions that had been lifted against Tehran as part of the agreement.

President Joe Biden has said Washington is willing to return to the pact if Tehran first suspends its countermeasures taken in response to US violations and re-imposition of sanctions.

The US has yet to take palpable measures to prove its commitment to the JCPOA since its 2018 withdrawal from the accord in spite of of international criticism.

Iran says as the party to have left the deal irrespective of international obligations, the onus is on the US to take the first step toward returning to full compliance by removing the sanctions, stressing it will resume its commitments under the JCPOA as soon as it feels the results of the sanctions removal.

Iran and the remaining parties to the JCPOA have held several rounds of talks in Vienna aimed at restoring the deal. Although progress has been made in the talks, certain points of contention still remain in the talks that were postponed as a new government took office in Iran in August.

Verification of sanctions removal  

Meanwhile, Iran’s Islamic Parliament Research Center demanded the formation of a state institution tasked with verifying the removal of the sanctions.

The center said in a report released on Tuesday that the institution could be an entity similar to Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) or the Supreme Supervisory Board for the Implementation of the JCPOA, or even a completely new body with its own organizational structure and secretariat.

It proposed that the new state institution compile periodic reports on the verification of the sanctions removal so as for Tehran to either adhere to the JCPOA, or to take a reciprocal measure and reduce or suspend its commitments.

The Islamic Parliament Research Center highlighted that the verification body should present its reports to the Supreme Supervisory Board for the Implementation of the JCPOA.

The proposed institution, it said, is supposed to monitor and analyze benefits to Iran’s economy in the aftermath of the sanctions removal and enable any Iranian citizen or institution especially those removed from the sanctions list to seek compensation.

The agency should also devise mechanisms aimed at suspending, ceasing or scaling back activity and their practical implementation in case of non-compliance on the part of other signatories to the JCPOA, the Islamic Parliament Research Center suggested.

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