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FM: Iran counteracts other side’s excessive demands with its own tools, power in Vienna talks

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian

Iran’s foreign minister says the country uses its own tools in the face of the other side’s excessive demands during negotiations on restoring the 2015 Iran deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in the Austrian capital.

Hossein Amir-Abdollahian made the remarks on Sunday after attending a hearing session of the Iranian Parliament’s Committee on National Security and Foreign Policy to answer questions about the latest developments surrounding the diplomatic row over Iran’s nuclear program.

Amir-Abdollahian said that during the talks, Tehran “has offered its initiatives and ideas on a logical basis whenever it was treated in a logical way by the other side.”

“Every time that the opposite side put forth excessive demands during the [Vienna talks], we used the country’s own tools and power, so that they would understand that the interests and welfare of the Iranian nation were important to us and that we will continue our efforts to this end,” Iran’s top diplomat added.

Iran’s foreign minister expressed hope that the measures meant to get all the negotiating parties to return to the JCPOA, would be taken in such a way that Iran’s power and demands as well as people’s expectations are taken into consideration.

“While emphasizing the need to completely protect the rights of the country in international arena, our people expect us to do so while respecting all the red lines,” Amir-Abdollahian said.

Since April last year, the Iranian negotiating team has been involved in marathon talks with the other remaining parties to the JCPOA – Britain, France, Germany, China, and Russia – with the aim of bringing the US back into the deal and destroying its sanctions regime against Tehran.

Under former president Donald Trump, the United States pulled out of the landmark agreement and instigated what it described as the “maximum pressure” campaign of sanctions against the Islamic Republic to reach a “better deal” than the JCPOA.

Meanwhile, the Vienna talks have been on hold since March as Washington insists on its refusal to undo its past wrongs through measures such as removing Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) from its list of foreign terrorist organizations.

In yet another blow to the bleak prospects of reviving the JCPOA, the US, France, Britain, and Germany spearheaded a resolution at the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Board of Governors on Wednesday, which accused Iran of not cooperating with the UN nuclear watchdog.

Iran has denounced the resolution and blamed the US and its three European allies for the crisis created over its nuclear program, which was under an unprecedented level of inspections before Washington withdrew from the JCPOA.

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