Iran re­jects change to its nu­clear deal

The Freeman - - WORLD -

TEHRAN — Iran yes­ter­day re­jected any mod­i­fi­ca­tion of its nu­clear deal with world pow­ers af­ter US President Don­ald Trump de­manded tough new mea­sures to keep the agree­ment alive.

Iran "will not ac­cept any amend­ments in this agree­ment, be it now or in the fu­ture, and it will not al­low any other is­sues to be linked to the JCPOA," the for­eign min­istry said in a state­ment, us­ing the 2015 deal's tech­ni­cal name.

Trump again waived nu­cle­ar­related sanc­tions on Fri­day—as re­quired ev­ery few months to stay in the agree­ment—but de­manded Euro­pean part­ners work with the United States to "fix the deal's dis­as­trous flaws, or the United States will with­draw."

He said the new deal should curb Iran's mis­sile pro­gram and in­clude per­ma­nent re­stric­tions on Iran's nu­clear plants, re­mov­ing ex­pi­ra­tion dates due to kick in af­ter a decade.

But Iran's For­eign Min­is­ter Mo­ham­mad Javad Zarif said the 2015 deal could not be rene­go­ti­ated. "JCPOA is not rene­go­tiable: rather than re­peat­ing tired rhetoric, US must bring it­self into full com­pli­ance—just like Iran," Zarif tweeted im­me­di­ately af­ter Trump's speech.

The state­ment from his min­istry fur­ther crit­i­cized new sanc­tions on 14 in­di­vid­u­als an­nounced by the US Trea­sury on Fri­day over hu­man rights is­sues and Iran's mis­sile pro­gram.

In par­tic­u­lar, plac­ing ju­di­ciary chief Ay­a­tol­lah Sadegh Lar­i­jani on the sanc­tions list "crossed all red lines of con­duct in the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity ... and the gov­ern­ment of the United States will bear re­spon­si­bil­ity for all the con­se­quences of this hos­tile move."

Iran ar­gues that con­tin­ued US sanc­tions on non-nu­clear ar­eas such as hu­man rights and mis­sile test­ing have ef­fec­tively barred Iran from gain­ing many of the fi­nan­cial ben­e­fits ex­pected from the deal.

Zarif has said Trump's ag­gres­sive stance on the deal and Iran gen­er­ally have also vi­o­lated the com­mit­ment to "re­frain from any pol­icy specif­i­cally in­tended to di­rectly and ad­versely af­fect the nor­mal­iza­tion of trade and eco­nomic re­la­tions with Iran" in the ac­cord.

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