Diplomacy Facilitating JCPOA Implementation

Diplomacy Facilitating JCPOA ImplementationDiplomacy Facilitating JCPOA Implementation

A nuclear negotiator said the effective diplomacy adopted by the Foreign Ministry is clearing the troubled path for Iran to exploit the full potential of last year's nuclear agreement.

"The Foreign Ministry has put pressure on the other side to help remove obstacles in the way of implementing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action," Abbas Araqchi said, using the formal title of the July 14 accord.

"Such measures have compelled the US and European governments to take steps in this regard … It appears that the problem will be gradually removed," he said in an interview with state TV on Saturday.

The action plan was clinched with P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) and took effect on Jan. 16 to provide sanctions relief in return for temporary constraints on Tehran's nuclear program.

Iran has complained that the remaining US sanctions do not allow it to reap the expected benefits of the deal by deterring international firms and financial institutions from the Iranian market.

Lingering US restrictions include a ban on transactions with Iran in dollars being processed through the American financial system.

  Iranophobia Campaign

The head of Foreign Ministry's office for the JCPOA implementation said hardline lobbyists in the United States, the Zionist regime and some other countries like Saudi Arabia are promoting Iranophobia to, as they put it, prevent Iran from enjoying the fruits of JCPOA.

"Their attempts, along with the non-nuclear sanctions, have sapped the confidence of European banks in conducting commercial activities with Iran," he said. "Big European banks have yet to resume dealings with domestic banks, but some small- and medium-sized banks from the continent have already reengaged with Iranian banks."

The deputy foreign minister laid part of the blame on the defective national banking system.

Tehran has called on the United States to do more to remove obstacles to the banking sector so that businesses feel comfortable while investing in Iran without fear of penalties.

During a high-powered EU delegation's visit to Tehran last month led by its foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif sought the bloc's leverage to compel the United States to ease restrictions interfering with Iran rejoining the international economic community. He also raised the issue in two meetings with his US counterpart John Kerry in the same month.

Kerry said after the meetings that he was trying to clear up uncertainty in the business community outside the United States about investing in Iran.

Zarif said he hoped Kerry's clarification would help.

The top US diplomat also tried to reassure Europe's top banks last week, telling them they have nothing to fear from resuming business with Iran, as long as they make proper checks on trade partners and pursue "legitimate business".  

"We want to make it clear that legitimate business, which is clear under the definition of the agreement, is available to banks," he said in a meeting with executives from leading European banks in London, Reuters reported.

US officials have said the administration is considering ways in which non-US companies could use the dollar in some business transactions with Iran. Araqchi said, "The government of President Barack Obama and Europeans regard JCPOA as an achievement and want it to survive … So they are willing to uphold it."