Wednesday, August 12, 2020 | ePaper

Iran President renews ultimatum over nuclear pact compliance

  • Print


Russia's President Putin meets with Iran's President Rouhani on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Summit in Bishkek on Friday.

Reuters, Dushanbe :
Iran will continue scaling back compliance with its nuclear deal commitments unless other signatories show "positive signals", the Iranian president told a meeting of Russian, Chinese and other Asian leaders in Tajikistan.
Iran stopped complying in May with some commitments in a 2015 nuclear deal that was agreed with global powers, a year after the United States unilaterally withdrew from the accord and tightened sanctions.
Tehran said in May that Iran would start enriching uranium at a higher level, unless world powers protected its economy from U.S. sanctions within 60 days.
"Obviously, Iran cannot stick to this agreement unilaterally," President Hassan Rouhani told the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia.
"It is necessary that all the sides of this agreement contribute to restoring it," he said, adding that Iran needed to see "positive signals" from other signatories to the pact, which include Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany.
He did not give details on what actions Iran would take or say what positive signals Tehran wanted to see.
France and other European signatories to the deal, which aimed to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions, have said they wanted to save it, but many of their companies have canceled deals with Tehran, under financial pressure from the United States.
Western powers have accused Iran of seeking to develop nuclear weapons, a charge Tehran denies saying it wants nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
Rouhani made no mention of attacks on two tankers in the Gulf of Oman this week which Washington has blamed on Tehran, raising concern about new confrontation. Iran has denied any role in the attacks.
Earlier, European countries said on Thursday they wanted to preserve Iran's nuclear deal and rejected "ultimatums" from Tehran, after Iran relaxed restrictions on its nuclear program and threatened moves that might breach the 2015 international pact.
Iran's announcement on Wednesday, related to curbs on its stockpiling of nuclear materials, was in response to U.S. sanctions imposed following President Donald Trump's withdrawal of the United States from the accord with Tehran a year ago.
Iran's initial moves do not appear to violate the accord yet. But President Hassan Rouhani said that unless the world powers which signed the deal protect Iran's economy from U.S. sanctions within 60 days, Iran would start enriching uranium beyond limits set in the agreement.
"We reject any ultimatums and we will assess Iran's compliance on the basis of Iran's performance regarding its nuclear-related commitments ...," read a statement issued jointly by the European Union and the foreign ministers of Britain, France and Germany, co-signatories of the deal.
"We are determined to continue pursuing efforts to enable the continuation of legitimate trade with Iran," they said, adding that this included getting a special purpose vehicle aimed at enabling non-dollar business with Iran off the ground.
In response, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a Twitter post that EU countries should uphold their obligations in the nuclear deal with Iran and normalize economic ties despite U.S. sanctions, "instead of demanding that Iran unilaterally abide by a multilateral accord".
The nuclear deal required Iran to curb its uranium enrichment capacity to head off any pathway to developing a nuclear bomb, in return for the removal of most international sanctions. A series of more intrusive U.N. inspections under the deal have verified that Iran is meeting its commitments.
Iran has always denied that it was seeking a nuclear weapon and says it wants to abide by the nuclear deal.
The Trump administration argues that the nuclear deal was flawed because it is not permanent, does not address Iran's missile program and does not punish Iran for what Washington considers meddling in regional countries.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo alluded to that in a statement on Thursday.
"To date the regime's default option has been violence, and we appeal to those in Tehran who see a path to a prosperous future through de-escalation to modify the regime's behavior," Pompeo said.
"Our restraint to this point should not be mistaken by Iran for a lack of resolve," Pompeo said.

More News For this Category

China accused of seeking to turn Taiwan into `the next Hong Kong`

China accused of seeking to turn Taiwan into `the next Hong Kong`

Al Jazeera News :Taiwan faces an increasingly difficult position as China pressures the democratic island to accept conditions that would turn it into the next Hong Kong, its top diplomat

Indian independence hero Gandhi's iconic glasses go on sale in UK

Indian independence hero Gandhi's iconic glasses go on sale in UK

Al Jazeera News :A "rare and important" pair of iconic glasses worn by Indian independence hero Mahatma Gandhi look set to sell for tens of thousands of pounds after a

UN investigator says Facebook has not shared 'evidence' of Myanmar crime

Reuters :The head of a UN investigative body on Myanmar said Facebook has not released evidence of "serious international crimes", despite vowing to work with investigators looking into abuses in

Explosions hit US coalition supply convoys in Iraq

Reuters, Baghdad : At least two explosions have hit convoys supplying U.S.-led coalition forces in Iraq in the last 24 hours, security sources said, the first on Monday evening near the

Belarusian opposition leader flees abroad after bloody clashes

Belarusian opposition leader flees abroad after bloody clashes

Reuters, Nsk :Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanouskaya said on Tuesday she had fled abroad for the sake of her children, after two nights of clashes following the contested re-election of

Turkey says it will license new Mediterranean areas this month

Turkey says it will license new Mediterranean areas this month

Reuters, Nkara : Turkey will issue seismic exploration and drilling licenses in new areas of the eastern Mediterranean by the end of August and continue its operations in the region, Foreign

Egyptians vote for revived upper house of Parliament

Egyptians vote for revived upper house of Parliament

Al Jazeera News :Egyptians have started voting for the Senate, the upper chamber of Parliament that was revived as part of constitutional amendments approved in a referendum last year, in

Beirut blast destroys iconic 19th Century Palace

Beirut blast destroys iconic 19th Century Palace

AP :Last week's Beirut blast destroyed the 160-year-old landmark Sursock Palace, one of the most storied buildings in the Lebanese capital which withstood two world wars, the fall of

Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai arrested under national security law

Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai arrested under national security law

Reuters, Hong Kong :Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai became the highest-profile arrest under a new national security law on Monday, detained over suspected collusion with foreign forces as

Indonesia's Sinabung volcano sends ash 5km into sky

Indonesia's Sinabung volcano sends ash 5km into sky

AP :The rumbling Mount Sinabung on Indonesia's Sumatra island sent a column of volcanic materials as high as 5,000 meters (16,400 feet) into the sky on Monday.There were no