P5+1 Ministers Likely to Meet on UNGA Sidelines

P5+1 Ministers  Likely to Meet on UNGA SidelinesP5+1 Ministers  Likely to Meet on UNGA Sidelines

Iran is likely to call for a ministerial meeting between the signatories to the 2015 nuclear deal on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly next month to discuss the US uncooperative stance, the Iranian nuclear chief said.

"My feeling is that [Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad] Zarif will probably ask for a ministerial meeting between Iran and P5+1 on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly," Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, was quoted as telling reporters by IRNA on Sunday.

P5+1 stands for the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany that negotiated the historic accord with Iran.

It has been in place as of January 2016 to lift most of the international sanctions against the Islamic Republic in exchange for time-bound restrictions on its nuclear work.

But the pact is facing threats from the hawkish US President Donald Trump, who has branded it "the worst ever deal".

Trump's harassment tactic to squeeze Iran out of the deal has led nowhere and he is now pressing the UN nuclear agency, the deal monitoring authority, not to confirm Iran's compliance.

The IAEA has verified Tehran's commitment to its deal obligations in all of its reports so far.

The harassment involved levying fresh sanctions on Iran last month to punish it for its missile activities and alleged human rights abuses, terrorism sponsorship and arms smuggling.

Trump reluctantly certified Iran's compliance with the pact for the second time over his seven-month-old presidency, following repeated appeals from his aides.

Such a certification is required every three months by the US law and he is now looking for options to justify decertifying Iran's commitment the next time, due in mid-October.

***Russian Action

Moscow is also working to bring the pact's parties together to address Iran's grievances, a member of the Federation Council's Foreign Affairs Committee said.

"Russia is after requesting a P5+1 meeting to settle the Iran issue," Igor Morozov said, Russian daily Izvestiya reported.

"Representatives of the International Atomic Energy Agency need to be invited to reaffirm that Iran has complied with the terms of the nuclear agreement without preconditions," he added.

Washington's European allies that joined the administration of Trump's predecessor Barack Obama in brokering the deal have ignored the Republican hawk's demand for a "full review" of it.

Morozov is positive that its European partners, namely Britain, France and Germany, will support Russia's call for the meeting.

"The European Union will most probably back Russia's request for holding the meeting because the Europeans have already launched investment in Iran and are uninterested in destabilizing the situation in this country."


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