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Monday, October 25, 2021

China urges US to lift sanctions on Iran to overcome Vienna stalemate


Last week, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appealed to the Joe Biden administration to lift or waive all sanctions imposed on Iran as per the 2015 nuclear accord.

China has urged the US to lift all sanctions imposed on Iran, calling on Washington to rejoin the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [JCPOA], Tehran Times reported on Saturday.

“The US’ unilateral withdrawal from the JCPOA and its maximum pressure on Iran are the root causes of the current Iranian nuclear crisis,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told the World Peace Forum, an event organised by Tsinghua University and the Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs.

“As the saying goes, he who tied the bow should untie it,” added Wang.

China, along with Iran, France, Britain, Germany and Russia, is among the countries involved in the 2015 nuclear accord and all parties are now engaging in talks to revive the JCPOA to reverse a decision by the former Donald Trump presidency to withdraw.

UN chief urges US to lift sanctions on Iran


The Vienna meetings are the first such talks to take place since US President Joe Biden came to office this year.

The US and Iran have been holding indirect talks since April, and have so far agreed to form working groups to ensure that both Washington and Tehran commit to their obligations in the nuclear deal.

Washington has expressed its readiness to remove sanctions on Iran on the condition that the Islamic Republic decreases its nuclear activities.

UN nuclear watchdog

According to a CNN report citing a senior Iranian official, Tehran has allegedly cut off the UN nuclear watchdog’s – International Atomic Energy Agency [IAEA] – access to images and footage taken by cameras inside Iranian nuclear facilities until an agreement is reached.

“If the talks succeed Iran will surely show the tapes to the IAEA,” the official told CNN on Friday.

“Sharing the tapes depends on the way that the negotiations will proceed. The key to the question is the agreement..if they agree on something that will open the door for cooperation and better understanding including in the area of transparency.”

The report said Tehran does not intend on getting rid of the footage as long as the Vienna talks continue.

This comes after the expiration of the IAEA’s monitoring agreement with Iran, which until now has not been extended, creating concerns over the Islamic Republic’s commitment to live up to its obligations.
“Technical understandings between the IAEA and Tehran have not been officially extended yet. Under the circumstances it is important to ensure that video cameras at nuclear sites continue to work and video records are preserved. This will allow to avoid problems in future,” tweeted Russia’s representative at the talks Mikhail Ulyanov on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Iran to the UN in Vienna Kazem Gharibabadi said Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Safeguards Massimo Aparo will go to Iran next week.
“The purpose of the visit is in line with routine safeguards activities in the context of the CSA [Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement]. Although we are in continuous contact, but there is no pre-planned talks in Tehran during the visit,” said Gharibabadi.

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