TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Tehran would take the third step to suspend more of its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers if the EU fails to “operationalize” its obligations.
“If Europe cannot operationalize its commitments, Iran will take its third step to reduce its JCPOA commitments,” Rouhani told his French counterpart Emanuel Macron in a phone call on Saturday night.
However, “this step, just like the other ones, will be reversible,” he added.
“Unfortunately after this unilateral move by the US, European countries did not take concrete measures to implement their commitments,” he continued.
“The contents of the JCPOA are unchangeable and all parties must be committed to its contents,” the Iranian president stressed.
Macron’s office released a statement later Saturday in which he stressed the importance of “the current dynamic to create the conditions for a de-escalation through dialogue and building a durable solution in the region,” AFP reported.
Tehran has rowed back on its nuclear commitments twice in compliance with articles 26 and 36 of the 2015 deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). The first phase started on May 8 and the second phase on July 7.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a recent interview with the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper that the next step would be taken on September 6.
Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, US, Britain, France, and Germany) on July 14, 2015, reached a conclusion over the text of the JCPOA.
The accord took effect in January 2016 and was supposed to terminate all nuclear-related sanctions against Iran all at once, but its implementation was hampered by the US policies and its eventual withdrawal from the deal.
On May 8, 2018, US President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the nuclear accord.
Following the US withdrawal, Iran and the remaining parties launched talks to save the deal.
However, the EU’s failure to ensure Iran’s economic interests forced Tehran to stop honoring certain commitments, including an unlimited rise in the stockpile of enriched uranium.
Spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi said recently that the country’s enriched uranium stockpile has reached 360 to 370 kilograms.