Thu, 12 Dec 2019

TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Foreign Minister of Iran Mohammad Javad Zarif said Tehran has left the door open for negotiations to save the 2015 nuclear deal.

- Politics news -

Speaking to reporters on Friday upon his arrival in Turkey to attend the 24th meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO), Zarif explicated Iran's decision to implement the fourth phase of reducing its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in response to the US' withdrawal from the deal and Europe's failure to fulfill its side of the bargain.

"We had made it clear that if the measures of the other parties (to the JCPOA) do not yield results, we'd take the next steps to decrease our JCPOA commitments," he said.

"The (Iranian) president announced on the first day of scaling back the JCPOA commitments that we will continue the negotiations despite taking our steps within the framework of the JCPOA," Zarif said, adding that Tehran started the talks from the very first day and "did not say no to negotiation."

"We will hold talks with those parties interested in preserving the JCPOA; the French will continue their consultations on the issue, and we will leave the door open for negotiation and understanding," Press TV quoted him as saying.

His comments came after Iran restarted enrichment at the Fordow nuclear facility as the fourth step away from the 2015 accord.

The country had earlier reduced its commitments in three other phases, but the latest one, the injection of uranium hexafluoride (UF6) gas into centrifuges at Fordow, is believed to be the most important step so far, and a serious warning to the other parties.

In May 2018, US President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the JCPOA.

Iran and the remaining parties launched talks to save the JCPOA after the US withdrawal, but the three EU parties to the deal (France, Britain, and Germany) have failed to ensure Iran's economic interests.

The EU's inaction forced Tehran to stop honoring certain commitments to the nuclear deal, including a rise in the stockpile of enriched uranium.

Iran maintains that the new measures are not designed to harm the JCPOA but to save the accord by creating a balance in the commitments.

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