Iran shouldn't expect any more US concessions in nuclear talks, White House says

American officials waiting for Tehran to accept conditions in negotiations in fresh round of nuclear deal talks aiming to reinstate 2015 deal, says State Department

Clara Hill@clara_ish
Friday 07 May 2021 14:48
comments
<p>The Biden administration is waiting for Iran’s next move in the talks to reinstate the JCPOA</p>

The Biden administration is waiting for Iran’s next move in the talks to reinstate the JCPOA

President Joe Biden’s government is hinting that Iran should keep their expectations low for new offers following a new series of discussions between the two nations over the nuclear deal.

A senior source told reporters on Thursday that the U.S had outlined all their terms and conditions for rejoining their 2015 nuclear deal, which was heralded as a major success of diplomacy, that President Donald Trump removed the US from.

The source, an official within Mr Biden’s government, said that continuing was up to Iran, as they were not going to budge from their position.

The latest update comes after Anthony Blinken, the Biden-appointed Secterary of State spoke about Iran’s stubbornness throughout the talks on a recent trip to Ukraine.

“What we don’t know is whether Iran is actually prepared to make the decisions necessary to return to full compliance with the nuclear agreement,” Blinken said to NBC News while on a trip to Kiev.

“They unfortunately have been continuing to take steps that restarting dangerous parts of their programme that the nuclear agreement stopped. And the jury is out on whether they’re prepared to do what’s necessary.”

Iran appears to want the US to lift all the sanctions placed on them by the Trump administration. Previously, they scoffed at the implication they had to backtrack on the measures that violate the old deal. Iranian government figures have said that the US had committed to notable, but not adequate lifting of the sanctions however, they had not said what they would do in return.

The anonymous official from the US government said that the US is willing to resume to the clear terms of the deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, as was agreed by the Obama administration in 2015, but only on the understanding Iran follows suit. They said that the US will not do any extra than what is required by the JCPOA to ensure Iran does the same as before.

The old deal provided Iran with billions in sanctions relief to ensure they refrained on parts of their nuclear programme. A lot of this disappeared after Mr Trump’s quit the deal, reinstating and increasing sanctions on Iran. Tehran retaliated by increasing their uranium enrichment and other activities hindered by the deal, such as using advanced centrifuges and significant water production.

Recent talks in Vienna led to the US saying they could be convinced to give leeway with what they would offer Iran, such as extending past the terms of the deal to remove some sanctions not concerned with nuclear, the ones put in place by Mr Trump.

While the anonymous official stated that this was still true, they said their pliancy was at boiling point. They did not go into detail about the concessions, but said that anything deemed “inconsistent” with the JCPOA would be refused.

They did not want to comment about if this series of talks would lead to an advancement but said there was a chance they could come to a conclusion fast, namely before Iran’s upcoming Presidential elections in June. This was proving to be something making matters more complex.

“We think this is doable,” The source said. “This isn’t rocket science.”

However, they pointed out that any conclusion hinged upon Iran not asking for anything it was not liable to and by scrapping the moves they had taken to violate the previous deal.

The Biden administration has been tight lipped about what sanctions it would be lifting however, people have suggested it will be ones that do not concern their nuclear programme. This implies the ones put on Iran by Mr Trump for their ballistic missiles and human rights infringments.

The anonymous source did say that the Trump administration was no longer thought by the current government had inflicted his non-nuclear sanctions with the main purpose of ruining a return to the 2015 deal.

They said they did not refute the “evidentary basis” for those sanctions. However, they did say they are investigating if they are “consistent with a return” to the JCPOA.

“If we think it is inconsistent with a return to the JCPOA to maintain a particular designation, then we are prepared to lift it,” the source said.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments