Wednesday, November 30, 2022

US-Europe restrictions only lead to more nuclear progress in Iran: Zarif

The Iranian foreign minister says the restrictions Western countries bring to bear will only help drive Iran's nuclear capability.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says no restriction can be imposed on the Islamic Republic, stressing that moves by the US and Europe against Iran’s nuclear energy program have only led to the country’s progress in this regard.

“The measures that the US and Europe have so far taken to stop Iran’s [nuclear] activities have had no result but progress in the country’s nuclear technology,” Zarif said on Monday.

He added that Iran’s nuclear know-how and capabilities cannot be contained.

Pointing to the West’s standoff with Iran over the country’s nuclear energy program, the Iranian minister added, “Depriving Iran of [its] nuclear energy program cannot be a solution to the issue because Iran has achieved the nuclear know-how and technology.”

He said regional countries whose interests are served by the prolongation of the nuclear dispute have fueled “the fabricated crisis” to cover up their own short-term strategic goals in the region.

Zarif called on the countries with which Iran is engaged in nuclear negotiations to accept the realities about Iran’s nuclear energy program.

At the current juncture, Europe can play a “serious and leading” role in striking a balance between the sides in nuclear talks with Iran, he said.

Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – Russia, China, France, Britain and the US – plus Germany held their latest round of talks in New York (September 18-26) to work out a final agreement aimed at ending the long-running dispute over Tehran’s civilian nuclear energy program before a November 24 deadline.

Last November, Iran and the P5+1 clinched an interim nuclear accord, which took effect on January 20 and expired six months later. However, they agreed to extend their talks until November 24, as they remained divided on a number of key issues.

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