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‘Time is of the essence’ in Iran co-operation: United Nations nuclear watchdog

‘Time is of the essence’ in Iran co-operation: United Nations nuclear watchdog ‘Time is of the essence’ in Iran co-operation: United Nations nuclear watchdog
Deanna Wagner | 10 September, 2019, 23:57

Iran has announced its third step to suspend parts of its commitments to the landmark 2015 nuclear accord, known as Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in response to the latest US sanctions on Tehran and Europe's sluggishness to save the deal.

"It's not Iran that needs to be brought back into the fold. everybody needs to re-commit, both sides have legitimate issues", Khouri notes, "the critical thing is to make sure that anything that is discussed is sanctioned by global law, they can't have a negotiation that is defined by what Donald Trump or Mike Pompeo wants, that wouldn't go anywhere because Iranians would refuse it".

"You know we've done more sanctions on Iran than anybody, and it's absolutely working", Mnuchin said.

In its statement, the IAEA added that the centrifuges had been installed at Iran's Natanz facility and all of them "had been prepared for testing with UF6 (uranium hexafluoride), although none of them were being tested with UF6 on 7 and 8 September 2019".

Pompeo said that the Iranian regime had effectively been handed billions of dollars which has allowed Iran to build on its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

"Now the president has made clear, he is happy to take a meeting with no preconditions, but we are maintaining the maximum pressure campaign", Mnuchin said, just days after Iran said it had fired up centrifuges to boost its enriched uranium stockpiles.

Criticism of Iran from Washington was prompted by a meeting of the IAEA Board of Governors on September 9 where IAEA Acting Director Cornel Feruta said he has informed Iranian officials during a recent visit to Tehran about the importance of "full and timely" cooperation with United Nations nuclear inspectors.

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Rouhani also said that Iran would give Europeans two months to fulfil their commitments to shield the Iranian economy from the USA sanctions.

The JCPOA was reached in July 2015 between Iran and the P5+1, namely the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China plus Germany, together with the European Union.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, standing alongside Mnuchin in the White House briefing room, said "sure" when asked whether Trump could meet Rouhani later this month on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in NY. Washington also has been pressuring other countries to follow suit.

At the G7 summit last week, French president said that he was "convinced that an agreement" could be found if the United States and Iranian presidents could meet.

"If any IAEA member-state including the United States or Israel has credible information, they should give it to the agency rather than make a public-relations show out of this", Kimball said. "Iran should straighten out because frankly, they're in a very bad position", he added.

However, Rouhani ruled out any bilateral talks with the White House, retreating from his earlier remarks of openness to talk with anyone when the interests of his people are at stake.