Iran says U.S. should provide guarantees for revival of 2015 nuclear deal

Illustration shows Iran's and U.S.' flags
FILE PHOTO: Iran’s and U.S.’ flags are seen printed on paper in this illustration taken January 27, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

February 5, 2022

(Reuters) – Iran’s foreign minister said on Saturday that a U.S. move to restore sanctions waivers to Tehran was not enough and Washington should provide guarantees for the revival of the 2015 nuclear deal with major powers.

Washington on Friday restored the waivers to allow international nuclear cooperation projects, as indirect U.S.-Iranian talks on reviving the nuclear deal enter the final stretch in Vienna.

“The lifting of some sanctions can in itself translate into good faith,” Hossein Amirabdollahian said in comments reported by Iranian media.

“While what is on paper is good, but it’s not enough,” he added.

Amirabdollahian said one of the major issues in the Vienna talks was getting “guarantees, especially from the West, to fulfil their obligations.”

“We demand guarantees in the political, legal and economic spheres. Certain agreements have already been reached,” he added.

The waivers restored by Washington had allowed Russian, Chinese and European companies to carry out non-proliferation work to effectively make it harder for Iranian nuclear sites to be used for weapons development. The waivers were rescinded by the United States in 2019 and 2020 under former President Donald Trump, who pulled out of the nuclear agreement in 2018.

The United States and Iran have held eight rounds of indirect talks in Vienna since April aimed at reinstating the pact with major powers – the United States, China, Russia, France, Germany and Britain – which lifted sanctions against Tehran in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program.

After Trump pulled the United States out of the deal and reimposed harsh sanctions, Iran gradually started violating the pact’s nuclear curbs. Tehran insists its nuclear programme is purely for peaceful purposes.

Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, said in a post on Twitter on Saturday: “Iran’s legal right to continue research and development and maintain its peaceful nuclear capabilities and achievements, side by side with its security … cannot be curbed by any agreement.”

(Editing by Alison Williams and Frances Kerry)

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