Zarif reacts to France's position on Iran's return to JCPOA

Zarif reacts to France's position on Iran's return to JCPOA

Moscow and Tehran called for the rescue of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal Tuesday, as the two countries' foreign ministers held their first talks since US President Joe Biden took office. "Both we and Iran are deeply interested in the full return of signatory states to fulfilling their obligations under the accord", Lavrov said.

Zarif said that if Washington began by "unconditionally removing, with full effect, all sanctions imposed, re-imposed, or relabeled since Trump took office", Iran would reverse the steps it has taken since the USA withdrew its signature from the deal in 2018.

Iran reaffirmed on Sunday that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), known commonly as Iran Nuclear Deal, is untouchable, in reaction to suggestions for a renegotiation of its chapters.

Moscow and Tehran say Joe Biden's administration must lift sanctions and comply with 2015 nuclear deal as condition for Tehran to rejoin accord.

. "But if Washington instead insists on extracting concessions, then this opportunity will be lost", he said.

Throughout his election campaign, Biden expressed plans to return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed in 2015 by Iran and the US, Britain, France, Germany, China and Russian Federation.

It offered sanctions relief in exchange for curbs on Tehran's nuclear ambitions and guarantees it would not seek an atomic bomb.

A new wave of U.S. sanctions has hit hard Iran's vital oil sector and its global banking ties, plunging the economy into a recession.

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and Biden's pick for secretary of state, Anthony Blinken, have made statements in the last few days to confirm that the new US administration will treat Iran strictly.

This comes amid reports that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will send Mossad chief Yossi Cohen to Washington next month to issue Israel's demands before any new version of the Iran nuclear deal is agreed to.

Moscow appears cautiously optimistic over the fate of the deal under the new White House administration after its arms negotiator described Washington's position as "businesslike and pragmatic".

Earlier in the month, Iran launched 20-percent uranium enrichment process as part of Iran's Strategic Action Plan to Counter Sanctions which was approved by the parliament in December 2020.

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