Iran reduces commitment to 2015 nuclear deal despite increasing US sanctions

Iran reduces commitment to 2015 nuclear deal despite increasing US sanctions

Iran reduces commitment to 2015 nuclear deal despite increasing US sanctions

Written by Reuters

07 Jul, 2019 | 6:04 pm

REUTERS: Iran said on Sunday (July 7) it is fully prepared to enrich uranium at any level and with any amount, in further defiance of U.S. efforts to squeeze the country with sanctions and force it to renegotiate a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers. In a news conference broadcast live, senior Iranian officials said Tehran would keep reducing its commitments every 60 days unless signatories of the pact moved to protect it from U.S. sanctions.

“In a few hours the technical work will be done and enrichment procedures will start from 3.67% we predict that tomorrow morning when the agency comes to measure our enrichment will be higher than 3.67%” said Behrouz Kamalvandi, the spokesman for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organisation. Under the pact, Iran can enrich uranium to 3.67% fissile material, well below the 20% it was reaching before the deal and the roughly 90% suitable for a nuclear weapon.

Iran shows no sign of caving in to pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump in a confrontation that has taken on a military dimension, with Washington blaming Tehran for attacks on oil tankers, and Iran shooting down a U.S. drone, prompting aborted U.S. air strikes.

Tehran has expressed frustration over what it says is the failure of European parties to the agreement to salvage the pact by protecting Iran’s economic interests from U.S. sanctions. “European countries have failed to uphold their commitments and they are also responsible,” Abbas Araqchi, Iran’s senior nuclear negotiator, told the news conference in Tehran.

The nuclear deal is formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The United States last year pulled out of the accord, signed along with China, Russia and European Union countries Britain, France and Germany.

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