EU rejects Iran’s ultimatum over nuclear deal

The European troika of UN mediators (the UK, Germany and France) has rejected Iran’s ultimatum under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA), according to a joint statement released on Thursday.

The Europeans also denounced new US sanctions against Iran. The UK, Germany and France pledged to continue work on creating the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX) with Iran to bypass US trade sanctions.

“We reject any ultimatums and we will assess Iran’s compliance on the basis of Iran’s performance regarding its nuclear-related commitments under the JCPoA and the NPT (Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons),” the statement reads.

“In this respect, we recall the key role of IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) monitoring and verification of the implementation by Iran of its nuclear-related commitments.”

“We note with great concern the statement made by Iran concerning its commitments under the JCPoA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action). We remain fully committed to the preservation and full implementation of the JCPoA, a key achievement of the global nuclear non-proliferation architecture, which is in the security interest of all. We strongly urge Iran to continue to implement its commitments under the JCPoA in full as it has done until now and to refrain from any escalatory steps,” the document says.

“We recall our own firm commitments under the agreement including as regards sanctions-lifting for the benefit of the Iranian people. In this regard, we regret the re-imposition of sanctions by the United States following their withdrawal from the JCPoA,” according to the document.

On May 8, 2018, US President Donald Trump announced that Washington would unilaterally quit the landmark accord inked in 2015 aimed at curbing Tehran’s nuclear program. Anti-Iranian sanctions, including a ban on purchasing oil, were reinstated in November.

On Wednesday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Tehran would suspend compliance with its obligations under two JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) clauses for 60 days. Iran will resume work to enrich uranium and upgrade the Arak reactor, if the parties to the deal fail to honor their commitments.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), known as the deal on Iran’s nuclear program, was signed between Iran and six international mediators (the United Kingdom, Germany, China, Russia, the United States, and France) on July 14, 2015.