TEHRAN – Chief of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), who has visited Vienna, told NHK that the United States should lift all sanctions against his country.
Mohammad Eslami, who addressed the 65th general conference of the IAEA on Monday, stressed that the U.S. should rectify its “wrong policies”.
Eslami said the U.S. has failed to implement its obligations under the legally binding 2015 nuclear pact, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
He said it is necessary that the U.S. remove all sanctions and quickly return to the JCPOA. The new nuclear chief added Iran will take action step by step, in accordance with what the U.S. does.
The U.S. under Donald Trump withdrew from the deal in 2018 and re-imposed previous sanctions lifted under the JCPOA and introduced new ones under his “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran.
The Biden administration began indirect talks with Iran in April to salvage the deal. But the negotiations have stalled due to disagreements on issues including the extent of sanctions relief.
Tehran’s nuclear program topped the agenda at the general meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency that kicked off on Monday.
IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi called on Tehran to cooperate with the Agency’s inspection of nuclear facilities in the country.
One year after the U.S. quit the JCPOA Iran said its strategic patience is over and started to gradually remove bans on its nuclear activities in accordance with paragraph 36 of the JCPOA.
Iran took this compensatory measure as the European signatories to the JCPOA failed to compensate Iran for the sanctions.
Under the nuclear agreement Iran agreed to put limits on its nuclear activities in exchange for termination of economic and financial sanctions.
Eslami meets German energy minister
Iran’s nuclear chief also met on Tuesday with Andreas Fiecht, the German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, on the sidelines of the annual IAEA conference.
Kazem Gharibabadi, Iran’s ambassador to the Vienna-based IAEA, tweeted, “Heads of Iranian and German’s delegations met at the sidelines of IAEA GC. Mohammad Eslami, Head of AEOI and Andreas Fiecht, State Sec for Economic Affairs and Energy discussed bilateral relations and developments around the JCPOA.”
Eslami also met Grossi on Monday to discuss technical issues and future cooperation in accordance with the IAEA rules and regulations.
Regarding his meeting with the IAEA director general, Eslami said, “The meeting with the Director General of the (International Atomic Energy) Agency was a follow-up to his visit and the talks in Tehran. We agreed with him that we should establish and define the current situation as a turning point in the IAEA-Iran relationship in a way that is full of goodwill. Also, our technical issues and the tasks of the Agency should be used in such a way that we can expand the country’s nuclear program.”
He also noted that Iran has not deviated from its nuclear program.
Addressing the IAEA conference on Monday, Eslami also said, “It is necessary that the IAEA avoid politicization and maintain its independence, impartiality and professionalism.”