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Iran Press TV

US bargaining for extra clauses, creating obstacles to reviving JCPOA: Russia FM

Iran Press TV

Tuesday, 31 May 2022 1:40 PM

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says the United States has been bargaining for some "additional clauses" in talks between Iran and the P4+1 group of countries, thus creating barriers to reviving the multilateral 2015 deal that it has abandoned.

"Certain obstacles have been mounted here, mostly because of the US that has been bargaining for some additional clauses to be able to modify the initial idea and contents [of the deal] approved by the UN Security Council," Russia's top diplomat said on Tuesday.

He emphasized that Moscow proceeds from the idea that it would be just "to revive the JCPOA without any omissions or additions," referring to the landmark deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

Several rounds of negotiations between Iran and the five remaining parties to the JCPOA - Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia - have been held in the Austrian capital of Vienna since April 2021 to bring Washington back into the deal. The American diplomats were not allowed to directly join the talks due to Washington's unilateral withdrawal.

Talks have been on hold since March as Washington insists on its refusal to undo its past wrongs through measures such as removing Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from its foreign terrorist organization list.

Earlier this month, Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said Tehran and the P4+1 group of countries still have the opportunity to reach a "good and reliable" agreement on the JCPOA revival if the United States makes the necessary decision and honors its commitments.

Iran showed flexibility; ball in US court: Ulyanov

Meanwhile, the head of the Russian negotiating team, Mikhail Ulyanov, said on Tuesday that Iran has shown a certain degree of flexibility in resolving the stalemate in the Vienna talks, emphasizing that the ball is in the US court.

In a tweet, Ulyanov, who serves as Russia's Permanent Representative to International Organizations in Vienna, said the Vienna talks on the JCPOA revival remain on pause since March 10.

"According to mass media reports, Iran during the recent visit of the #EU Coordinator to Tehran demonstrated certain degree of flexibility and now waits for a response from the US side," he said, pointing to a visit by the European Union's deputy foreign policy chief, Enrique Mora, to Tehran and his talks with senior Iranian officials earlier this month.

"The ball is in #Washington's court," the Russian diplomat tweeted.

Addressing a meeting of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday, the US special envoy for Iran, Robert Malley, acknowledged once again that abandoning the JCPOA did not serve Washington's interests, but said the prospects of reviving the agreement are "tenuous at best."

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