0105 GMT August 18, 2022
An Iranian website, affiliated with the country's Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), said it has received news that the fresh round of the talks on the removal of U.S. sanctions and revival of a 2015 nuclear deal is highly expected to be held in Doha.
Nour News made the announcement in a tweet, saying the Qatari capital’s “better chance of hosting the forthcoming talks” than the other Persian Gulf littoral states is because of the Arab country’s continued efforts to resume the negotiations on the removal of the sanctions.
The tweet read: “Some news received by @nournewsen indicate that Doha has a better chance of hosting the forthcoming talks to revive #JCPOA than other Persian Gulf states, given #Qatar's ongoing efforts to resume talks on lifting sanctions.”
Following a Saturday meeting between Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and the visiting European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, the two sides announced at a joint press conference the resumption of the sanctions removal talks in the coming days.
Since April 2021, several rounds of talks have been held in Vienna between Iran and the remaining parties the nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), to revive the agreement.
Iran signed the JCPOA with the world powers in July 2015 accepting to put some curbs on its nuclear program in return for the removal of the sanctions on Tehran. However, former president Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the agreement in May 2018 and reimposed unilateral sanctions on Tehran, prompting Iran, after a year of strategic patience, to reduce some of its nuclear commitments under the agreement in retaliation.
Iran insists on obtaining guarantees that the succeeding U.S. governments would not drop the deal again and calls for lifting the sanctions in a verifiable manner.
After witnessing good progress making everyone believe that an agreement was only a few days away, the diplomatic process has, however, faced a pause since March, raising concerns over the talks’ failure to come to fruition.
Rights remain red line
Commenting on his meeting with Borrell, the Iranian foreign minister said in a post on his Instagram page on Saturday night that the Islamic Republic has never left the negotiating table and will continue the nuclear talks without relinquishing the rights of the country’s people.
Amir-Abdollahian expressed hope that this time, the United States would take responsible and committed measures in a realistic and just manner in the forthcoming negotiations to reach a final agreement.
He noted that the Islamic Republic is determined to reach a good, strong and lasting agreement if the other sides show the required will to this end.
On the top EU diplomat’s visit, Amir-Abdollahian said Borrell came to Iran following a phone conversation they had in search of a solution to end the deadlock in the negotiations and put the talks back on the track.
He added during their ‘positive’ meeting, which took long four hours, they discussed comprehensive cooperation between Iran and the EU.
The Iranian foreign minister added he told Borrell that the Islamic Republic is after having balanced relations with all other countries and Europe has an important place for Tehran “in such a balanced foreign policy”.
He added maintaining and improving relations with all European countries, the EU and non-EU states alike, are among the Islamic Republic’s priorities in ties with the continent.