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Iran Announces ‘Modifications’ of Its Obligations under 2015 Nuclear Deal

May 8, 2019 (EIRNS)—Iranian President Hassan Rouhani announced this morning that Iran will begin downgrading some of its commitments under the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the agreement between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany that placed limits on Iran’s nuclear program in return for the lifting of economic sanctions that had been imposed on it for its alleged pursuit of nuclear weapons. The U.S. withdrew from the agreement a year ago and reimposed its own sanctions, and has threatened secondary sanctions against other countries, including U.S. allies, that continue economic relations with Iran.

Rouhani told his cabinet this morning that the Iranian government had notified the five remaining signatories to the JCPOA of its decision, under which it will stop selling off its excess enriched uranium in its possession above the 300-kg limit specified in the agreement, and heavy water above the limit of 130 tons. Rouhani warned that the remaining five powers, plus the EU, have 60 days in which to ameliorate the effects of U.S. sanctions, mainly pertaining to Iranian oil exports and banking interaction, or it will take two more measures and stop observing the limit on uranium enrichment to 3.67% purity, reports Tasnim. Iran will not start breaching commitments and waging any war, Rouhani stressed, but it will not give in to bullying, either, and will give a decisive response to any aggressor.

“Today, an extremist group that is running the affairs in the White House has taken the authority from even the President, and this has made problems not only for the peoples of the region, but also America’s friends in Europe, Canada and Mexico,” Rouhani said in his remarks to the cabinet.

“Today, all those who were allies to the United States, and all enterprise owners and entrepreneurs around the world are suffering. In such conditions, Zionism, the reactionaries and internal groups in the U.S., especially AIPAC, put pressure on the government to withdraw from the JCPOA.”

Iran’s Supreme National Security Council released a formal statement describing the actions that Rouhani had announced. It stressed that Iran was taking its actions under Articles 26 and 36 of the agreement itself, which gives Iran certain rights to take actions if other signatories to the agreement fail to live up to their commitments, as the U.S. has by withdrawing from it.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to continue its consultations with the remaining members of the JCPOA at all levels, but will show a strong and immediate response to any irresponsible action, including referral to the UN Security Council or implementation of further sanctions,”

it said.

“We entered nuclear talks with goodwill, made an agreement with goodwill, implemented the agreement with goodwill, and provided enough time to the other members after the withdrawal of the United States with goodwill. Now, it is the remaining countries’ turn to prove their goodwill and take serious and practical steps to preserve the JCPOA.”

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