News ID: 99750
Publish Date : 06 February 2022 - 21:35
FM Amir-Abdollahian:

No ‘Serious Initiative’ Tabled by U.S. Yet

TEHRAN -- Foreign Minister
Hussein Amir-Abdollahian said Sunday the United States has not yet put forward a “serious initiative” regarding the talks in Vienna aimed at reviving the 2015 nuclear deal by removing anti-Iran sanctions.
“We have not seen any serious and notable initiative from the U.S. What is important for us is the opposite side’s action,” he said in an exclusive interview with IRIB news.
“We look at what happens on the ground. We have to see the Americans’ practical behavior regarding the sanctions removal in an objective and tangible manner.”
The remarks came two days after the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden claimed that it had restored a sanctions waiver, which was rescinded by his predecessor, Donald Trump, in May 2020.
The U.S. measure took place amid a pause in the eighth round of the Vienna talks as envoys from Iran and the P4+1 group of countries — Britain, France, Russia, and China plus Germany —returned to their capitals for consultations.
Amir-Abdollahian said Iran has not received any preconditions from the American side, dismissing recent media claims to this effect.
The negotiations, he added, are advancing based on expert viewpoints and agreements that could lead to a good deal ensuring Tehran’s interests.
Asked about the possibility of a two-year agreement, he said, “We are looking for a good agreement, not a limited one that lasts for a specific period of time.”
Earlier on Sunday, Iran’s top security official stressed that the Vienna talks are “far from” achieving a balance of commitments by the participants, saying the U.S. is currently required to take “political decisions” for that aim.
“Despite limited progress in the #ViennaTalks, we are still far from achieving the necessary balance in the commitments of the parties,” Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani tweeted.
“Political decisions in Washington are requirements for balance of commitments to reach a good agreement.”
Trump unilaterally left the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May 2018 and reimposed the anti-Iran sanctions that the deal had lifted. He also placed additional sanctions on Iran under other pretexts not related to the nuclear case as part of his “maximum pressure” campaign.
Following a year of strategic patience, Iran decided to let go of some of the restrictions on its nuclear energy program, resorting to its legal rights under the JCPOA, which grants a party the right to suspend its contractual commitments in case of a non-performance by the other side.
The Biden administration had voiced a willingness to compensate for Trump’s mistake and rejoin the deal, but it has retained the sanctions as leverage.
EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, in a phone call with Iran’s foreign minister on Saturday, said he expected all parties to come to Vienna with a clear agenda to reach an agreement and be ready to make political decisions.
Amir-Abdollahian said in the call that “positive developments have taken place since the previous talks, but they still do not meet our expectations.
“We are determinedly seeking a good deal, but at the same time we are focusing on preserving our red lines and national interests.”
The U.S. State Department on Friday said it was waiving sanctions on Iran’s civil nuclear program in a technical step necessary to return to the JCPOA, but the proposed was dismissed in Tehran as a sham.
The waiver allows other countries and companies to participate in Iran’s civil nuclear program without triggering U.S. sanctions on them, in the name of promoting safety and non-proliferation.
“What happens on paper is good but not enough,” Amir-Abdollahian said on Saturday, adding that “we seek and demand guarantees in the political, legal and economic sectors.”