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EU Sticks with Iran Nuclear Pact but Rejects Tehran’s Ultimatums

The European Union, in a joint statement issued on May 9 with the foreign ministers of Britain, France and Germany, said: “We reject any ultimatums and we will assess Iran’s compliance on the basis of Iran’s performance regarding its nuclear-related commitments under the JCPOA and the NPT (Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons).” JCPOA stands for Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, a deal struck with Iran in 2015 by the EU, UK, France, Germany, the US, China and Russia to limit Tehran’s drive to become a nuclear power. The US withdrew from the agreement in May 2018, claiming Iran was in noncompliance, and reimposed crippling sanctions. On May 8, Tehran announced it considered itself no longer formerly bound to what it termed “voluntary” aspects of the deal. At the same time, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said his country would start enriching uranium to higher levels than those allowed under JCPOA unless Washington rescinded some of those sanctions within 60 days.