Iran gives Europe a 2-month deadline as France pushes $15 billion ransom to save nuclear deal
Iran will give another two-month deadline to the European Union to salvage the 2015 nuclear pact, President Hassan Rohani said on Wednesday, according to the semi-official ISNA news agency.
The statement came after a senior Iranian official confirmed on Wednesday that Tehran would return to its nuclear deal commitment only if it got $15 billion for oil sales over four months, as stipulated in a draft French plan to salvage the accord.
France has proposed offering Iran $15 billion ransom payment in credit lines until year-end if Tehran comes fully back into compliance with its 2015 nuclear deal. Macron has declined to provide any details of the negotiations.
“Our return to the full implementation of the nuclear accord is subject to the receipt of $15 billion over a four-month period, otherwise the process of reducing Iran’s commitments will continue,” Fars quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi as saying.
“Either Europe has to buy oil from Iran or provide Iran with the equivalent of selling oil as a credit line guaranteed by Iran’s oil revenues, which in some sense means a pre-sale of oil,” Araqchi added.
Iran recently started enriching uranium beyond a limit established in a 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers, a deal from which Trump withdrew. Trump has since intensified economic sanctions on Tehran, and tensions have escalated.
Tehran has threatened to take further steps by Sept. 6, such as enriching uranium to 20% or restarting mothballed centrifuges, machines that purify uranium for use as fuel in power plants or, if very highly enriched, in weapons.
In July, PM Netanyahu condemned the EU’s response to Iran’s breaches of its nuclear limit, saying it reminds the European appeasement to Nazi Germany ahead of World War Two.
“I call on my friends, the heads of France, Britain, and Germany – you signed this deal and you said that as soon as they take this step, severe sanctions will be imposed – that was the Security Council resolution. Where are you?”, he asked.
“The enrichment of uranium is made for one reason and one reason only – it’s for the creation of atomic bombs,” Netanyahu added.