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February 20, 2022 10:05 am

Iran MPs Put Forth Conditions for Reviving Nuclear Deal

avatar by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

Iranian lawmakers attend the opening ceremony of Iran’s 11th parliament, practicing social distancing as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in Tehran, Iran, May 27, 2020. WANA (West Asia News Agency) via REUTERS

Iranian lawmakers have laid out six conditions for the revival of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal with global powers in a letter to President Ebrahim Raisi published on Sunday, the country’s official IRNA news agency reported.

The letter, signed by 250 out of 290 parliamentarians, stated that US and European parties should guarantee that they would not exit a restored agreement, nor trigger the “snapback mechanism” under which sanctions on Iran would be immediately reinstated if it violates nuclear compliance.

The hardline-led parliament has not voted on the proposed conditions and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who enjoys the support of hardliners, has the final say on Iran’s nuclear policy and all other matters of state.

“We have to learn a lesson from past experiences and put a red line on the national interest by not committing to any agreement without obtaining necessary guarantees first,” lawmakers said in the letter.

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The statement comes in the midst of final steps to revive a 2015 nuclear agreement in Vienna, which could lead to an agreement “very soon,” according to a senior European Union official.

Such conditions from lawmakers at a crucial time risk restricting Iranian negotiators’ room to maneuver in Vienna and endanger a final agreement.

The letter also said a return to the deal should only go ahead if all sanctions were lifted, including those pertaining to terrorism, missile technology and human rights.

In addition, lawmakers first want to confirm that Iran receives money from its exports, before the government returns to nuclear compliance, the statement added.

After 10 months of talks in Vienna, one of the remaining differences is Iran’s demand for a US guarantee of no more sanctions or other punitive steps in the future, and also how and when to restore verifiable restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activity.

A senior Iranian official has told Reuters that Iran has shown flexibility by agreeing to “inherent guarantees” as Washington says it is impossible for President Joe Biden to provide the legal assurances Iran has demanded.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian said on Saturday that a joint statement by the heads of the US Senate and House of Representatives to back the nuclear deal would suffice as a “political guarantee.”

Under the 2015 deal, Iran agreed to curb its nuclear work in return for relief from US and other sanctions. The accord includes the option of a snapback of UN sanctions if Iran breaches the deal, requiring Tehran to suspend all nuclear enrichment-related and reprocessing activities, including research development.

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