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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran to pull out JCPOA if EU mechanism fails to work: FM Zarif

ISNA - Iranian Students' News Agency

Sun / 30 September 2018 / 14:21

Tehran (ISNA) - Iran might pull out of the deal if the special mechanism being created by the Europeans doesn't work, the Iranian diplomat who negotiated the nuclear deal said.

"The actual mechanism would be to avoid dollars," Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told reporters at a roundtable at the Iranian mission to the United Nations in New York on Saturday evening, saying countries are starting to make agreements to use their own currencies in bilateral trade.

"You can use your own currency," he explained. "Sell stuff in your own currency, buy stuff in the other country's currency, and at the end of a specific period, balance it out in a non-dollar currency. It's quite possible and may even be profitable."

The United States is poised to impose sanctions in early November targeting Iran's oil sector. The sanctions were suspended under the nuclear deal that the United States and five other world powers agreed to in 2015. But after President Trump announced in May that he was withdrawing from the deal, U.S. officials have pressured countries around the world to stop their oil sales from Iran. They also threatened secondary sanctions if the sanctions are defied, Washington Post reported.

But the European Union said Monday that its member countries would establish a system to allow oil companies and private businesses to keep trading with Iran.

Zarif said Iran might pull out of the deal if the special mechanism being created by the Europeans doesn't work. Asked if that would open the door to a U.S. military attack, he said, "I think if the United States believed it could succeed in such an attack, it would have done so."

"Have you seen that map with all the U.S. bases around us and said, 'Why are these Iranians putting their country in the middle of all these bases?" he said. "We are in our region. We have not invaded any country. We have not sent troops anywhere we were not asked. We have not bombed any country. We have not taken territory from any country. We are content with our size, with our geography, with our resources. We have no eye on anybody else's territory, resources or people."

"I didn't know that you still had witch hunts here in the U.S.," Zarif said when asked to characterize the conversations with Kerry.

"What he has done has been to encourage us to stay in the deal," he added, lauding the virtues of dialogue between Americans and Iranians.

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