No progress in the nuclear agreement parties meeting with Iran.
The parties to the nuclear agreement with Iran made no progress on Wednesday regarding preserving it, while Tehran continued to violate many of its basic provisions in response to US sanctions, but efforts aimed at alleviating the suffering of the Iranian economy continued.
Wednesday’s meeting of senior officials came more than a month after France, Britain and Germany, accused Iran of violating its provisions at the start of a process that could eventually lead to the reimposition of the international sanctions that were lifted under the agreement.
But in a move showing the Europeans ’position between pressure on Iran not to violate the agreement and attempts to maintain it, the European Union’s foreign policy representative said this month that the major powers would extend the time period related to this process indefinitely to avoid re-imposing sanctions on Iran.
Delegates said that this process, known as the Mechanism for Conflict Resolution, was not discussed even at Wednesday’s meeting, although Europeans criticized Iran.
“Serious concerns have been expressed about the implementation of Iran’s nuclear obligations under the agreement,” Helga Schmid, Secretary-General of the European Union’s Foreign Action Service, who chaired the meeting, said in a statement.
“The participants also recognized that the reimposition of US sanctions did not allow Iran to reap the full benefits of lifting the sanctions,” she added.
Iran has violated many of the key provisions of the agreement, including with regard to its stockpile of enriched uranium, in response to the US withdrawal from it and the reimposition of sanctions that have caused Tehran to reduce oil exports.
Tehran’s continuing violations erode the main objective of the agreement, which is to make Iran one year away from obtaining enough fissile material to build a nuclear bomb if it chooses to do so. Iran says it can quickly reverse its violations if the US sanctions are lifted. Washington says its campaign of “maximum pressure” will force Iran to negotiate a more comprehensive deal.
In statements to reporters after the meeting, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi focused on European efforts to provide a means to allow a small amount of mutual trade with Iran. “It is important to say that the agreement is still alive,” Araghchi said. “We know the Europeans are trying. We know there is a desire but the lack of ability is evident. ” he added