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JCPOA revival talks

Iran says it has utilized all available tools and resources to stand up to excessive demands of other signatories to the 2015 deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, JCPOA. Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian said the other sides should know that the Islamic Republic attaches great importance to the interest and welfare of the Iranian nation. He stressed that Iran's demands and expectations should be taken into account during the course of efforts to bring the signatories back to JCPOA. The top diplomat underlined that Iran had put forward its initiatives within a logical framework and acted accordingly. He said, Iran seeks to secure its rights in the international arena while drawing attention to its red lines.

Iraq political impasse

Iraq’s parliamentary speaker says lawmakers from influential cleric Moqtada al-Sadr’s bloc have resigned, potentially ending months of political crisis in the country. Mohammed al-Halbussi made the announcement on Twitter after receiving resignation letters from the 73 lawmakers. Moqtada Sadr had called on the lawmakers to step down in a move to break the parliamentary stalemate and let a new government be formed sooner. The Iraqi parliament has been in turmoil since the October general election. Negotiations among political factions have failed to command a two-third majority in support of a new prime minister. Sadr’s bloc had won 73 seats in the elections.

US gun violence

A bipartisan group of US senators has proposed steps to curb gun violence following devastating mass shootings in Texas and New York. The new framework notably has backing from at least 10 Republicans. That means it has a strong chance of earning the super majority of 60 votes needed to advance in the 100-seat Senate. The reforms include stricter background checks for gun buyers under 21 and increasing resources for states to keep weapons out of the hands of people deemed a risk. In the past, Republican lawmakers repeatedly blocked tougher measures against gun violence. They still insist that mental health issues are the root cause of the problem. The shootings in May have piled up pressure on politicians to take immediate action to stop bloodshed. Last month, an assailant at a Texas elementary school shot dead 19 young children and two teachers. Another gunman at a New York supermarket killed 10 Black people.

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