“To appease the sworn enemy of JCPOA, UK/US FMs spin goals of Vienna talks. Disappointing!” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh tweeted, referring to the nuclear deal by its official name.
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action was signed in July 2015 between Iran and the US, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China. It was abandoned in May 2018 by the former administration in the US, in a move strongly supported by Israel, Press TV wrote.
The Vienna talks, which began in early April, are aimed at bringing the US back into the deal, under a new administration that has promised to rejoin the deal and repeal Washington’s hostile “maximum pressure” policy against Tehran.
Khatibzadeh further reminded the parties to the JCPOA that the “brutal Israeli regime” has done its utmost to torpedo the deal.
“Instead of eroding your credibility, focus on reviving the original deal – the ONLY solution on the table,” he added.
Washington and London have been in close contact with Israel over the revival of the JCPOA, with Israel still overtly opposing the move.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a joint press event with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Tuesday that Washington should avoid rejoining the JCPOA, claiming that the deal paves the way for Iran to develop nuclear weapons, an allegation that Iran has categorically rejected throughout the years.
Blinken said the US will try to rejoin the JCPOA nevertheless, but he added that the US and Israel continue to work together to counter what he claimed as "Iran’s destabilizing actions in the region”.
He also said the US is “consulting closely with Israel as we did today on the ongoing negotiations in Vienna around a potential return to the Iran nuclear agreement”.
British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on Tuesday visited Israel, where he reiterated London’s commitment to Tel Aviv’s security and underlined the importance of a “stronger nuclear deal” with Iran.
JCPOA parties meet US delegation
Russia’s Permanent Representative to the International Organizations in Vienna Mikhail Ulyanov said that the JCPOA participating states, excluding Iran, met with the US delegation to discuss current states of affairs at the Vienna talks.
“The JCPOA participating states (without Iran) met today with the US delegation,” Ulyanov tweeted on Thursday.
“We exchanged views on the current states of affairs at the Vienna talks with special emphasis on implementation aspects of a future agreement which is at an advanced stage of elaboration,” he added.
Iran has criticized the administration of US President Joe Biden for failing to remove all sanctions imposed by Donald Trump, saying Washington is using them as a leverage in the Vienna talks.
Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Monday that lifting Trump’s sanctions is not a negotiating leverage but a legal and moral obligation.
Addressing the US administration officials, Zarif said the sanctions did not work for Trump and will not work for the Biden administration as well.
“Trump’s legacy is past its expiration date. Drop it,” he said, directly addressing the US president.
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Washington will be careful in how it decides to lift sanctions from Iran if the talks in Vienna bear fruit.
Yellen made the remarks on Thursday while answering questions about Iran and its support for Palestinian groups in the Committee on Oversight and Reform in the United States House of Representatives.
Yellen said the US will decide what sanctions it will deem appropriate to lift if Iran resumes compliance with the nuclear deal.
“So we will carefully review what sanctions relief would be appropriate if Iran takes the appropriate steps,” she said, according to remarks covered by ANI and Sputnik.