Biden administration will not lift all Iran sanctions

TEHRAN, Oct. 16 (MNA) – The acting director of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council's South Asia Center believes the Biden administration will not lift all Iran sanctions and revival of JCPOA needs compromise.

Recently, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian called the US attitude towards the JCPOA "unconstructive" and said that the Iranian administration would not wait for the empty promises of other sides to the deal. 

"The new administration will resume negotiations, said Iran FM, adding that Raeisi's administration is reviewing the cases of the previous negotiations. 

Iran has held six rounds of talks with JCPOA participants known as the P4+1 with the aim of salvaging the JCPOA in the Austrian capital of Vienna. Tehran has insisted that it would resume full compliance with the deal after the removal of the sanctions that the previous US administration under Trump illegally imposed on Tehran after its unilateral and illegitimate withdrawal from the JCPOA in May 2018. 

It has already stressed that it would leave the Vienna talks if they take too long and if its legitimate demands as per the JCPOA are not met. Anyway, the other parties, especially the Europeans seem to be killing time while the new US administration is still sticking to the Trump-era sanctions.

The current US administration has not yet fulfilled the promises Joe Biden made during his presidential elections campaigns to undo Trump's actions and return to the deal. In the meantime, Tehran has also stressed that the Biden administration's return to the agreement without lifting the sanctions is not important at all.

To shed light on the issue, we reached out to Barbara Slavin, the acting director of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council's South Asia Center.

Answering a question about the possibility of beginning the talks to revive the JCPOA, Slavin expressed hope for the beginning of the talks.

And while Iran has announced its readiness to start constructive result-based negotiations, she said, "It seems the Iranian side is still dragging its heels and that there will be more ‘talks about talks’ in Brussels before a return to Vienna."

Commenting on the possibility of removal of all sanctions that the Trump administration illegally imposed on Iran, Slavin said, "The Biden administration will not lift all sanctions imposed by Trump for non-nuclear reasons," adding, "If Iran wants a clean return to the JCPOA, it will have to compromise on its position."

Elsewhere, she said, "One possibility is for the US to suspend sanctions on the IRGC in return for Iran agreeing to follow-on talks."

Answering a question about the fate of the possible talks to revive the JCPOA, she referred to President Raeisi's firm stance and said, "I am more pessimistic than I was several months ago." 

She also referred to Iran's refusal of direct talks with the US, adding that perhaps China and Russia can help to secure a back channel.

Interview by Zahra Mirzafarjouyan

News Code 179741

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