Tehran Has Other Options If Nuclear Talks Fail

Iran seeks with full force to conclude the talks with due regard for its stated goals, a lawmaker said
Tehran Has Other Options If Nuclear Talks Fail
Tehran Has Other Options If Nuclear Talks Fail

If the other party to negotiations on the revival of the 2015 nuclear deal is not willing to sign an agreement, Iran has other options on the table and is not empty-handed, a lawmaker said.  
“We seek with full force to conclude the talks with due regard for our stated goals,” Mahmoud Abbaszadeh Meshkini, member of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, told IRNA. 
He stressed, however, that any agreement which deprives Iran of intended benefits will not be acceptable by the Iranian nation. 
Iran received sanctions relief under the 2015 deal in return for curbs on its nuclear program, but the United States exited the agreement in 2018 and reimposed sweeping sanctions that prompted Tehran to row back on its commitments. 
Under a new president, the US vowed to rejoin the accord and initiated negotiations in the Austrian capital Vienna to work out how both sides could resume compliance with the deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. 
After more than a year of on-and-off discussions, the two sides are currently reviewing a draft text prepared by the European Union which aims to bridge the final gaps. 
Meshkini said political integrity, smart leadership and success in countering sanctions have given Iran the upper hand at the international arena and at the negotiating table, forcing the US to backtrack. 
“Implementing the Majlis strategic law helped retrieve part of the country’s lost achievements in the nuclear sector which acted as a trump card, helping us stand on a firmer footing in this round of talks,” he said, referring to a law passed in December 2021 in parliament which instructed the government to take further nuclear countermeasures. 



Past Experiences

A major stumbling block is Iran’s demand for strong guarantees for the effectiveness of sanctions lifting and continued adherence to the deal. 
“Given past experiences, western countries proved that they are not reliable in honoring their commitments and for this reason, the Islamic Republic demands assurances for an agreement,” Meshkini said. 
The US says it is unable to provide such ironclad guarantee that a future government would not abandon the JCPOA because the deal is a political understanding rather than a legally-binding treaty.
Iran has also called for the conclusion of questions by the International Atomic Energy Agency about uranium particles allegedly found on undeclared old sites. 
Officials in Tehran argue that the JCPOA was signed to end claims about Possible Military Dimensions of its nuclear activity and cannot come back into full force while similar false allegations remain in place. 
“[Resolving the safeguards issue] is a prelude that can rebuild the shattered wall of trust between Iran and the West,” Meshkini said. 
He added that a solution to this problem needs to be designed in a way that Iran can “have its finger on the trigger.”
He did not elaborate, but was likely referring to an authority to take reciprocal measures if the questions were to be raised again. 
The lawmaker also emphasized that there is no single way for progress and relations with the West is not the only way for the country’s development. 
“At some points, relations with the West is an obstacle to progress,” he said. 
He expressed hope that the government would rely on domestic capacities and advance the talks with vigilance and smartness so that no world power can stand against the Iranian nation. 

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