World Media

Iran nuclear deal: European powers triggered dispute mechanism

An attendee wears a badge strip with the logo of Huawei and a sign for 5G at the World 5G Exhibition in Beijing China

By taking the action, "our three countries are not joining a campaign to implement maximum pressure against Iran. Our hope is to bring Iran back into full compliance with its commitments under the JCPoA", they said. Iran's move comes in protest of the United States re-imposition of crippling economic sanctions.

Tehran had no immediate response to the E3 action, but earlier in the day Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif accused London, Paris and Bonn of appeasing the Washington and blindly following the USA lead.

The aim of the move by France, Germany and Britain is "to find solutions and return (Iran) to full compliance within the framework of this agreement. he said".

"European companies could see this as a major juncture in Europe-Iran relations and potentially a route to UN [Security Council] and EU sanctions on Iran, disrupting ongoing/future trade", tweeted Sahil Shah, policy fellow at the pro-JCPOA European Leadership Network.

After months of gradual steps to reduce compliance, Iran said on January 6 it would scrap limits on enriching uranium. The move came after the USA killed top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani in an airstrike in Baghdad.

It's been on life support since President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled the United States out in 2018, triggering sanctions that have hurt Iran's moribund economy.

It comes as Iran announced it would refuse to comply with any of the restrictions the JCPOA had placed on the country's nuclear programme.

Yet even as the European Union powers made clear their committment to the deal, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Tuesday he would be willing to work on a "Trump deal" to replace the JCPoA.

The U.S. Special Representative for Iran, Brian Hook, said Washington was "very pleased" by Johnson's comments.

With that in mind, today, the E3, consisting of the United Kingdom, France and Germany, have jointly taken action to hold Iran to account for its systematic non-compliance with the JCPoA.

The three European powers party to the deal act though the EU, which coordinates any negotiations over it with the other parties, which include Russian Federation and China.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said the three European countries "could no longer leave the growing Iranian violations of the nuclear agreement unanswered".

In this photo released by the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, technicians work at the Arak heavy water reactor's secondary circuit, as officials and media visit the site, near Arak, 150 miles (250 kilometers) southwest of the capital Tehran, Iran, Monday, Dec. 23, 2019. Iranian leaders have also stated repeatedly that they have no intention of pursuing nuclear weapons. I reiterate: "Israel will not allow Iran to achieve nuclear weapons", Netanyahu said.