Daily Management Review

Iran is still counting on a favourable outcome in talks with the US


At the end of the last week, the deadline Iran had given to the international community to reach a compromise on the nuclear deal expired. For now, however, Tehran is in no hurry to definitively deny the IAEA access to camera footage from Iranian nuclear facilities in the hope that the US will still lift its sanctions on Iran.

Adam Jones
Adam Jones
"The IAEA has no right of access to camera recordings and information from the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran due to the deadline," Chairman of Iran's parliament said on Sunday. However, Iranian Tasnim news agency, citing a certain official in the secretariat of the Supreme National Security Council, said there was a possibility of keeping camera footage for another month to allow the negotiations in Vienna to be completed to restore the "nuclear deal", that is, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed in 2015 by Tehran with the five permanent UN Security Council members and Germany. This is expected to demonstrate Iran's "goodwill".

The IAEA said on Sunday evening that the agency's director-general, Raphael Grossi, was continuing consultations with Iran on the issue. His press conference on the outcome of the talks is scheduled for Monday.

Iran restricted International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspection activities back in late February with the entry into force of the "Strategic Sanctions Action" law. This was Iran's latest attempt to get the "nuclear deal" reopened, shaken after the US withdrew from it in 2018, renewing its sanctions policy on Tehran, making it difficult for many countries to work with Iran.

Without waiting for the full launch of a European settlement mechanism that would allow trade deals to bypass US sanctions, Tehran began gradually reducing its commitments under the JCPOA in 2019. The Strategic Measures Act obliges the government to increase uranium enrichment to 20 per cent and waive the IAEA's additional protocol for extended inspections of nuclear facilities if Tehran is not allowed to trade freely in oil and financial transactions.

The agency was thus prevented from inspecting any Iranian nuclear facility at any time of its choosing.

At the same time, Tehran left a loophole in the hope of still getting the sanctions lifted. It was decided that camera recordings at nuclear facilities and a list thereof will be kept until May 21, and if a compromise is reached with the international community, Iran will provide them to the IAEA. If the sanctions were not lifted, all the recordings would be erased.

source: reuters.com