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European Union states put Iran on notice over N-deal

Filed on January 14, 2020 | Last updated on January 14, 2020 at 09.48 pm
European Union, Iran, notice, United Nations, sanctions, Britain, France, Germany
Germany's Foreign Minister Heiko Maas arrives at a European Union foreign ministers emergency meeting.- Reuters

Under its dispute resolution mechanism, countries have 30 days to resolve their problem though that can be extended.

Britain, France and Germany ratcheted up pressure on Iran on Tuesday to cease its violations of a landmark nuclear deal, a process that could result in a "snapback" of United Nations sanctions.

The three countries, which signed the international agreement in 2015 along with the United States, Russia and China, said in a letter to the European Union's foreign policy chief that they had no choice but to trigger the deal's "dispute mechanism", given Iran's ongoing transgressions.

The three said they rejected Tehran's argument that Iran was justified in violating the deal because the United States broke the agreement by pulling out unilaterally in 2018.

"We have therefore been left with no choice, given Iran's actions, but to register today our concerns that Iran is not meeting its commitments," the countries said in a joint statement.

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.

The 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, seeks to prevent Iran from producing a nuclear weapon - something Iran insists it does not want to do - by putting curbs on its atomic programme in exchange for economic incentives.

Under its dispute resolution mechanism, countries have 30 days to resolve their problem though that can be extended. If it cannot be solved, the matter could be brought before the UN Security Council and could then result in the snapback of sanctions that had been lifted under the deal.

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

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