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 Mohammad Javad Zarif
 Mohammad Javad Zarif

FM Sure of Continued US Sanctions Easing

FM Sure of Continued US Sanctions Easing

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said he is positive that US President Donald Trump would ultimately endorse the 90-day extension of the sanctions relief that Iran received under the 2015 nuclear deal.
The deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also subjected Tehran's nuclear program to time-bound curbs.
"Judging from the history of the JCPOA implementation so far and the US commitments, I believe they [the Americans] will renew the cessation of US sanctions," Zarif said in an interview with ISNA on Monday.
The Iranian foreign minister, however, said the Americans have unilaterally decided to launch a review process, which is against their international commitments.
Trump's administration acknowledged two weeks ago that the Islamic Republic was complying with the nuclear restrictions but said it was launching an inter-agency review of whether the lifting of sanctions against Iran was in the United States' national security interests.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson apprised the Congress of that assessment in a letter to House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan.
The accord requires the US State Department to notify Congress every 90 days on Iran's compliance.
"The US Department of State certified to US House Speaker Paul Ryan today that Iran is compliant through April 18 with its commitments," Tillerson said in a statement on the same date.
He did not say how long the review would take, but Trump has until May 19 to decide on the issue.
During his presidential campaign, Trump called the agreement "the worst deal ever negotiated", raising questions over whether he would rip up the agreement once he took office.
His administration, however, has reaffirmed commitment to the action plan in the latest meeting of a supervisory panel on April 25, despite his accord-bashing rhetoric.
The Joint Commission, established pursuant to JCPOA with representatives of all the seven parties to the deal, is tasked with monitoring the deal's implementation and handling any dispute.
"In the meeting, all members reaffirmed commitment to the continued enforcement of JCPOA and a positive statement was released at the end," Zarif said.
Iran denies ever having considered developing atomic weapons, although nuclear experts have warned that any US violation of the nuclear deal would allow Iran to pull back from its commitments to curb nuclear development.

 

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