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The EU says it is considering Iran’s response to the ‘final’ nuclear text

#Irans #response #final #nuclear #text

The European Union said on Tuesday it was considering Iran’s response to a “final” draft deal to revive a 2015 nuclear deal with major powers, which it presented at talks in Vienna.

The United States said on Monday that it would inform EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell of its response to the text he submitted on August 8th.

The possibility of a deal that could lead to the lifting of US sanctions on Iran’s 2.5 million barrels-per-day oil production has already helped spark a price slump in world markets, with US oil futures down nearly three percent fell below $90 a barrel.

A spokesman for Borrell – who coordinated talks to bring Iran and the US back into the deal – said the Iranian response came in late Monday.

“We are studying it and consulting with the other JCPOA participants and the US about the way forward,” the spokesman said, referring to the formal title of the nuclear pact.

Iran’s official news agency IRNA reported earlier Tuesday that “an agreement will be reached if the United States responds realistically and flexibly to Iran’s response.”

Iran’s ISNA news agency quoted an “informed source” as saying that Tehran “expects to get the response from the other side in the next two days.”

IRNA had said on Friday that Iran could accept the “final” text drafted by the European Union to salvage the deal aimed at curbing Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for sanctions lifting.

The deal has stalled since the United States withdrew in 2018 under then-President Donald Trump, whose administration again imposed crippling sanctions.

An unidentified Iranian diplomat said, according to IRNA, that “the European Union’s proposals are acceptable provided that they give assurances to Iran on various points related to sanctions and safeguards” as well as pending issues with the International Atomic Energy Agency.

– Three editions –

IRNA said the remaining differences centered on three points.

“The United States has verbally expressed flexibility on two, but that needs to be reflected in the text,” the news agency said, without elaborating.

“The third question has to do with a guarantee that the deal will last, and that depends on the realism of the United States to reassure Iran.”

Neither party has spelled out in detail the issues still blocking a deal.

Iran’s call for the US to end its blacklisting of its ideological army, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, as a “terrorist organization” has been dropped from discussions and will instead be dealt with after the deal, a senior EU official said earlier this month .

The official said progress had also been made on Tehran’s call for guarantees that there would be no repeat of Washington, as was the case under Trump in 2018.

Tehran and Washington have yet to agree on “issues related to sanctions lifting and some nuclear issues that didn’t exist in March as the Iranians advanced their program,” the EU official said.

Iran also wants the UN nuclear regulatory agency, the IAEA, to end its long-running investigation into traces of enriched uranium found in sites where nuclear activity did not take place.

Britain, China, France, Germany, Iran and Russia, and indirectly the United States, resumed nuclear deal talks in early August after a months-long hiatus.

EU-coordinated negotiations to revive the JCPOA began in April 2021 before stalling in March.

The EU said last Tuesday it expects Tehran and Washington to react “very quickly” to the “final” text aimed at salvaging the deal.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said after the lengthy negotiations, “what counts for us is checking” whether the sanctions will be lifted in practice.

US State Department spokesman Ned Price said it was up to Iran to reach a final deal and dismissed reported demands that fall outside the scope of the negotiations.

“We believe that what could be negotiated has been negotiated and we stand ready to effect a mutual return to compliance with the JCPOA,” Price said.

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