At Disarmament Conference, Iran FM says JCPOA status quo, product of US policies, miscalculations

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian speaks at the high-level segment of the Conference on Disarmament in the Swiss city of Geneva on February 28, 2023. (Photo by Mehr news agency)

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian has blamed the United States for the stalemate in talks aimed at reviving the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), saying the current situation is due to Washington’s policies and miscalculations.

Amir-Abdollahian made the remarks during the high-level segment of the Conference on Disarmament in the Swiss city of Geneva on Tuesday.

“The current status of the JCPOA is the product of the US policies and miscalculations. Our past experience taught us to become engaged in the new round of negotiations with more care and sensitivity,” he said.

The top Iranian diplomat went on to say that the few remaining issues regarding the talks on the revival of the agreement could be addressed easily.

“Therefore, without any preconditions and through goodwill and determination of all parties and within the framework of the negotiations held until now, the final steps of the talks can be taken,” he said.

Amir-Abdollahian further noted that the US needs to have “the will and strength to conclude the lengthy talks,” stressing that the Islamic Republic remains ready to continue the talks until the conclusion of an agreement.

He also urged the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to abandon its political approach in order to get close to a technical solution.

The Iranian foreign minister also warned the United Nations' nuclear watchdog against any unwise decision by the IAEA Board of Governors during an upcoming meeting in March, saying Tehran reserves the right to give an appropriate response.

He also reiterated that Iran’s nuclear program is fully peaceful and will remain so, emphasizing that the Islamic Republic will remain fully committed to its obligations under its comprehensive safeguards agreement as confirmed till now.

Iran rolled back its compliance with the 2015 nuclear accord after the US unilaterally withdrew from the deal in 2018 and reimposed sanctions on Iran. 

Tehran and the remaining signatories to the deal have held talks on reviving the accord since April 2021, after Joe Biden came to power in the US. But those talks have been stalled for months amid Washington's procrastination and refusal to provide guarantees. 

Iran says an agreement on the revival of the deal hinges on the settlement of issues between Tehran and the IAEA, as well as the removal of all US sanctions on the country. 

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