Blinken: Not clear whether Iran will abide by nuclear commitments

Blinken: Not clear whether Iran will abide by nuclear commitments

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Sunday that it was unclear whether Iran would abide by sanctions on its nuclear development program to remove US economic sanctions.

“Iran, I think, knows what it needs to do on the nuclear side to get back into compliance, and what we haven’t seen yet is whether Iran is ready and decided to do what it wants to do. Ready to take, “Blinken told ABC’s” This Week “show. “That’s the test and we don’t have any answers yet.”

Iran is negotiating indirectly with the United States through diplomats from other countries to re-shape the 2015 international nuclear deal to curb Tehran’s nuclear ambitions. Iran has said that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.

FILE – US Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks at the State Department in Washington on April 5, 2021.

The then US President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the agreement in 2018, imposing new restrictions on Tehran’s oil, banking and shipping sectors. But US President Joe Biden wants to rejoin that agreement, including Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China.

In a separate interview, Blinken told CNN that the US and Iran “have really made progress” in negotiations in Vienna and a fifth round is scheduled in the coming days.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said last week that the United States was ready to lift the trade embargo, although he was later denied by a senior Iranian official. European diplomats said that difficult issues remained in negotiation.

Iran has stated that to return to the agreement, the US must first lift its sanctions, while the US says Iran must first comply with the terms of the agreement.

Iran has consistently violated the 2015 agreement restrictions on uranium enrichment, but Blinken told CNN that if both parties can return to the original deal, “we can use it as a foundation, to see if For how to make the deal potentially longer and stronger – and also be involved in these other issues, whether it is Iran’s support for terrorism … unstable support for various proxies throughout the Middle East. “

But he told ABC, “The first thing we need to do is put the nuclear problem back in the box.”

In Tehran, Iran’s arch-parliament president said a temporary agreement between Iran and international inspectors to preserve surveillance images taken at nuclear sites had ended.

But the International Atomic Energy Agency said negotiations on that agreement with Tehran continued until Sunday night.