Mideast Daily News

Iran Preparing To Fast-track Uranium Enrichment If Nuclear Deal Scrapped

By Charles Bybelezer | The Media Line

July 18, 2018


The vice president of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization warned Tuesday that his country was laying the groundwork to fast-track its uranium enrichment program in the event the nuclear deal with world powers is scrapped. Tehran has been engaged in negotiations with France, Britain and Germany, in addition to Russia and China, in a bid to salvage the accord in the wake of President Donald Trump’s decision in May to withdraw the United States from the agreement and re-impose sanctions on the Islamic Republic. On Monday, a spokesperson for Iran’s Foreign Ministry confirmed that talks with the Europeans were proceeding and could last “weeks.” The first batch of renewed U.S. sanctions is slated to go into effect in August and will bar, among other things, Iran’s purchase of American dollars along with its trade of gold, precious metals and automotive parts. In November, additional sanctions will target the Islamic Republic’s crucial oil and shipping industries as well as its energy sector; secondary sanctions against global financial institutions doing business with Iran also will snap-back into place. In response, the Iranian government this week filed a suit at the International Court of Justice, the United Nations’ top legal body, alleging that Washington’s moves violate the 1955 Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights signed between the two countries; this, well before Iran’s Islamic Revolution ousted the U.S.-allied shah. Facing a similar suit brought by Iran in 2016, Washington argued that the ICJ lacked jurisdiction to hear the case.

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