TEHRAN (Dispatches) -- Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani Sunday urged Europe to avoid "threats or pressure” in any negotiations with Tehran, as he received Ireland’s foreign minister amid Washington’s obfuscation over the former U.S. regime’s hostile policies toward the Islamic Republic.
Ireland is currently "facilitator” for the United Nations Security Council resolution that enshrined the 2015 nuclear accord between Iran and six major powers, according to the Irish foreign ministry.
The deal, known formally as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), has been hanging by a thread since former U.S. president Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from it in 2018 and reimposed inhuman sanctions on Tehran.
Following Joe Biden’s U.S. presidential election victory in November, the European parties to the deal -- France, Germany and Britain – say they are trying to salvage the accord, but they have become more strident in their threats against Iran in recent weeks.
"The best way to solve problems with European partners at various bilateral, regional and international levels, is negotiations based on mutual respect and avoiding any threats or pressure,” Rouhani told Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney at Sunday’s meeting, according to a statement by the Iranian presidency.
Ireland is not party to the nuclear deal, but currently sits on the UN Security Council.
As "facilitator” for resolution 2231 - the UNSC resolution enshrining the nuclear deal -- Dublin is tasked with keeping other council members briefed with implementation of the deal.
The Iranian president criticized Europe’s "inactivity on JCPOA commitments” and added that Iran is committed to "preserving the JCPOA and is the only party that has paid a price for it.”
"But this situation cannot continue as it is,” Rouhani stressed.
"Preserving and reviving” the deal requires all sides to act on their commitments, he said.
The three European parties to the nuclear deal on Thursday scrapped a U.S. draft resolution at the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency that criticized Iran’s suspension of some nuclear inspections, a move welcomed by Tehran.
Biden has expressed a willingness to bring Washington back to the JCPOA. But he is demanding that Iran walk back all its remedial steps which it has taken in response to the U.S. violations and the Europeans’ failure to meet their end of the bargain.
Iran insists the United States has to lift its sanctions before the Islamic Republic considers a reversal.
Biden on Friday extended for another year the so-called U.S. national emergency declared in 1995 with regard to Iran as well as all-out sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
In extending the so-called emergency, Biden claimed that the actions and policies of the Iranian
government posed an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States.
When he came to office, Biden claimed willingness to return to a 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, but he has taken no meaningful measure to undo the former U.S. government’s wrongs.
Iran on February 23 started to restrict some IAEA inspections.
But a visit to Tehran by the UN nuclear agency chief Rafael Grossi just before the restriction came into force led to an interim technical deal for up to three months.
The arrangement would allow the body to continue monitoring "all the key activities,” Rossi claimed at the time.
Rouhani noted that "Iran still remains committed to cooperation with the IAEA.”
He added that Iran is ready to reverse the restrictions "after the lifting of America’s illegal sanctions and it stopping the policy of threats and pressure.”
Iran’s Foreign Minister Muhammad Javad Zarif was set to meet Coveney later in the day.
Zarif said on Twitter on Friday that he would soon present Tehran’s "constructive concrete plan of action-through proper diplomatic channels”.
The former Trump regime unleashed a "maximum pressure” campaign with the stated objective of forcing Iran to negotiate "a better agreement”.
Those pressures have failed to cow Iranians who have responded to Washington’s pressure policy with their own "maximum resistance”.
Biden, who had said Trump’s maximum pressure was a "maximum failure”, has not changed that policy, prompting Tehran to state that "Washington is addicted to pressure, sanctions and bullying, and it does not work with Iran”.