US, World Powers in ‘Lockstep’ Over Iran Return to Nuclear Compliance
Leaders of the United States, Britain, France and Germany over the weekend called on Iran to resume compliance with the nuclear deal signed in 2015, as talks to reup the deal remain stalled.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, making the rounds of Sunday morning political interview shows, told CNN that the US and the world powers are “absolutely in lockstep together on how we’re approaching the challenge of getting Iran back into compliance with the nuclear agreement, and that’s new because we had actually been at odds in recent years over that when the United States pulled out of the agreement. We’re now fully coordinated and working on this together.”
Blinken added that “we do not yet know whether Iran is willing to come back and to engage in a meaningful way and get back into compliance. If it isn’t, if it won’t, then we are looking together at all of the options necessary to deal with this problem.”
The talks, which began in April in Vienna and went for six rounds before stalling over the summer due to Iran’s elections, reportedly will resume at the end of November, according to Iranian officials.
The joint statement issued by US President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson following a meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Rome called on Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi to “seize this opportunity and return to a good faith effort to conclude our negotiations as a matter of urgency. That is the only sure way to avoid a dangerous escalation, which is not in any country’s interest.”
President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the deal in 2018, leading Iran to breach its limits on uranium enrichment several times over.
Blinken told CBS’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday that ”every option is on the table,” including a military option, if Iran does not return to compliance with the deal.