Tuesday, February 7, 2023

EU’s Threat to Leave JCPOA ‘Laughable’: Iran

Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyyed Abbas Mousavi says the European powers’ alleged threat to exit the 2015 Iran nuclear deal if Iran further reduces its commitments is “unacceptable” as it would be a “compensation of Iran’s compensatory measure”.

“I’m not informed about the European Union’s threat, but if they mean they would use some of these mechanisms in case Iran takes the fourth step, this is nonsense, unlawful, and illegal,” Mousavi told reporters on Monday.

“If they are thinking of – I don’t know – taking the issue to the Security Council or using the snapback and the like, I hereby tell them the move is already dead, because we had predicted compensatory measures for ourselves and for the other side in the JCPOA,” he added.

“Their compensatory measure was that if the Islamic Republic of Iran violates the JCPOA first, they could use the snapback mechanism. And if they breach the deal, Iran could take measures in line with the Articles 26 and 36 of the JCPOA, either step by step or all of a sudden.”

However, he said, it is quite laughable, unacceptable, and nonsense that they want to take compensatory measure against our compensatory measure. I hereby tell them not to bother.

His comments came after reports that the European Union has privately warned Iran it will be forced to start withdrawing from the nuclear deal in November if Tehran goes ahead with its threat to take new steps away from the deal.

Iran has already taken three separate calibrated steps away from the deal, and has warned it will take a fourth in November unless the US lifts economic sanctions.

The warning to Iran, pre-agreed by the three EU signatories to the 2015 deal, was made at a meeting on Wednesday, and makes clear that the agreement is now on life support.

The EU told Iran that it would put the issue of Iranian non-compliance into the agreement’s formal dispute mechanism if the next Iranian move away from the deal is significant.

Iran says it has been taking advertised, reversible and calibrated steps away from the deal as a reprisal for US sanctions, including its ban on Iranian oil exports, and the failure of the EU to do more to build trade with Iran. Tehran is due to take a fourth step on 7 November.

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