In an unique interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Monday, Zarif mentioned the Biden administration has a “restricted window of alternative” to re-enter the 2015 nuclear settlement.
“The time for the US to return again to the nuclear settlement isn’t limitless,” he mentioned. “America has a restricted window of alternative, as a result of President Biden doesn’t wish to painting himself as attempting to reap the benefits of the failed insurance policies of the previous Trump administration.”
Tehran has made clear that any settlement now with the Biden administration can be contingent on a reversal of the tough financial sanctions imposed by the Trump administration. In December, the hardliner-dominated Iranian Parliament handed laws obligating the federal government to additional ramp up uranium enrichment, if American sanctions usually are not eased inside two months of the regulation’s adaptation.
Requested simply how swiftly Iran might reduce its uranium enrichment program to adjust to the nuclear deal if the US lifts sanctions, Zarif mentioned, “8,000 kilos of enriched uranium can return to the earlier quantity in lower than a day.”
However Iran has publicly insisted that it doesn’t search a nuclear weapon, a stance that Zarif reiterated on Monday.
“If we wished to construct a nuclear weapon we might have executed it a while in the past,” he mentioned. “However we determined that nuclear weapons usually are not, wouldn’t increase our safety and are in contradiction to our, eh, ideological views. And that’s the reason we by no means pursued nuclear weapons.”
At an occasion for the US Institute of Peace on Friday, US Nationwide Safety Advisor Jake Sullivan mentioned restoring the deal was a vital early precedence for Biden’s administration— however warned that talks could possibly be affected by the truth that Iran has change into a extra vital risk than within the early years of the JCPOA.
Iran’s ballistic missile functionality has “superior dramatically,” he mentioned. “Their recklessness and sponsorship of terrorism within the area has not abated and in some areas has accelerated as nicely.”
Zarif, a former Iranian ambassador to the UN, mentioned that Iran has acted in accordance with dispute mechanisms written into the JCPOA, for the reason that US withdrawal. “Iran used the mechanisms within the nuclear settlement as a way to restrict its cooperation. Should you learn paragraph 36, we acted in strict accordance with the nuclear settlement,” he mentioned.
He known as on the US to droop arms gross sales to regional rivals, and mentioned that the Biden administration wants to stay to the unique circumstances of the nuclear deal.
“America has to simply accept what we agreed upon,” Zarif additionally mentioned. “We determined to not agree on sure issues, not as a result of we uncared for them, however as a result of the US and its allies weren’t ready to do what was needed.”
In response to Zarif, the query over who should take step one in returning to the JCPOA could possibly be resolved EU by overseas coverage chief Josep Borrell.
Borrell might put his “hat on” as coordinator for the Joint Fee of the JCPOA “and kind of choreograph the actions which are wanted to be taken by the US and the actions which are wanted to be taken by Iran,” he mentioned.