Iranian leader describes European Union proposals to save JCPOA as ‘disappointing’

Iranian leader describes European Union proposals to save JCPOA as ‘disappointing’

Late on Thursday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani had described as "disappointing" a package presented to him earlier by European countries.

"The responsibility for the change of Iran's cooperation level with... falls on those who have created this new situation", he said, according to the Reuters news agency.

The Vienna meeting Friday will discuss the European package of economic measures that aims to persuade Iran to stick with the deal, a European diplomat said without specifying the measures on offer. "We are trying to do it (economic package) before sanctions are imposed at the start of August and then the next set of sanctions in November".

Zarif pointed to his "very serious and constructive" talks with the remaining parties of the nuclear deal and said, "I believe that there is political will to continue work and save this agreement but we must see what will happen to this issue in practice."

"Everyone agreed that it was a grave violation of the deal's terms, " Lavrov said, adding that this USA move was apparently "provoked by nothing other than a desire to once again politicize the situation around Iran".

The other signatories - Britain, France, Germany, China and Russian Federation - have vowed to stay in the accord but appear powerless to stop their companies pulling out of Iran for fear of USA penalties.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas also said that world powers would not be able to fully compensate for companies who are abandoning their operations in Iran.

Rouhani told Merkel the USA exit from the JCPOA has caused some problems in economic areas, banking transactions and oil sector for the foreign companies which have made investment in Iran, making them reluctant about continuing their operations in the country. The bank now has a policy of not lending to Iran and other countries listed as high-risk by a global terrorism financing watchdog.

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Iran is also anxious about continuing its oil exports to other markets and about being shut out of global bank payments systems.

Iran has threatened to withdraw from the deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), if it does not receive enough economic guarantees from Europe.

Also, the bank has expressed concerns that it will have difficulty raising money in financial markets if it defies the US sanctions.

Even before the United States moved to reimpose sanctions on Iran, Tehran complained that the surge in foreign investment and trade that was expected to come under the nuclear deal never materialized.

Iran's economy is already suffering from the sanctions that Washington re-imposed after walking away from the nuclear agreement, and the USA has threatened to punish companies from other nations that continue doing business with Iran.

"What is important is that we know and we are certain that we want to stay in the deal and we believe that dialogue should continue in peace", she was quoted as saying.

Now, the threat of US sanctions has increasingly darkened the outlook for Iran's economy, helping to stoke a plunge in the Iranian rial this year that has driven up prices and provoked street protests and strikes.

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