US decision to withdraw from JCPOA like shooting in its leg

TEHRAN, Dec. 22 (MNA) – Referring to the US 2018 withdrawal from the JCPOA, Russia’s representative in Vienna talks said that the decision to withdraw from the JCPOA was like shooting in one of the US legs.

In a tweet on Wednesday, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the Vienna-based international organizations Mikhail Ulyanov wrote, "Indeed! The decision to withdraw from #JCPOA was like shooting in one of US legs. It doesn’t matter if it was left or right leg."

His tweet came in response to a tweet from an American journalist who criticized the Trump administration's decision to leave the JCPOA. "We are where we are because of what I consider one of the worst decisions in US foreign policy in the last decade: Getting out of JCPOA..."

He also announced in another tweet that he had met with Kuwait's representative to international organizations based in Vienna, Sadiq Marafi, to discuss Iran and the Vienna talks. 

"Today I met with a good friend of mine H.E. Ambassador Sadiq Marafi of Kuwait. I briefed him about current state of affairs at the #ViennaTalks. We also discussed the prospects of dialogue on security in the Persian Gulf after the restoration of the #JCPOA," the Russian diplomat said. 

Iran and the five remaining parties to the JCPOA -- Germany, Britain, France, Russia and China -- began the talks in the Austrian capital in April with the aim of removing the sanctions after the US, under President Joe Biden, voiced its willingness to return to the agreement.

During the first round of the Vienna talks under President Raeisi, Iran presented two draft texts which address, separately, the removal of US sanctions and Iran’s return to its nuclear commitments under the JCPOA. Tehran also said it was preparing a third draft text on the verification of the sanctions removal.

The Islamic Republic maintains that its presence at the talks is intended to have the US sanctions removed, which would, in turn, secure a US return to the nuclear deal.

The US, which is not allowed to directly participate in the talks as a result of its 2018 withdrawal from the JCPOA, claims that it is willing to undo the withdrawal and repeal its “maximum pressure” policy against Iran.

Iran argues that the onus is on Washington to return to the nuclear deal after removing its illegal sanctions and offering guarantees that it will not exit the pact again.

Iran’s chief negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani on Friday at the end of another round of talks in the Austrian capital of Vienna said that the pace of reaching an agreement depends on the will of the opposite side, adding, "If the other side accepts the rational views and positions of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the new round of talks can be the last one and we can achieve a deal in the shortest possible time."

ZZ/FNA14001001000028

News Code 182065

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