September 25, 2022

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Iran still reviewing EU proposal: official

TEHRAN – A senior official with the Iranian presidency has rejected media speculation about an Iranian decision on the proposals put forth by the European Union in the Vienna talks, saying that Tehran was still studying the proposals. 

Mohammad Jamshidi, who is the director of the Iranian president’s office for political affairs, said that he was not authorized to speak about the text submitted by the EU. 

“Of course, I cannot speak about the content or the authenticity of the recent text published by media about safeguards issues, but such coordinated leaks indicate which side is under pressure and need an urgent deal. The review is underway,” Jamshidi said on Twitter. 

The latest round of talks in Vienna over reviving the 2015 nuclear deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), came to an end on Monday. 

The EU coordinator for the talks, Josep Borrell, complicated the situation on the same day by saying that the negotiations have come to an end and that Iran should give a yes-or-no answer to the proposals he submitted. He called these proposals a “final text” in a move that raised eyebrows in Tehran and beyond. 

“What can be negotiated has been negotiated, and it’s now in a final text. However, behind every technical issue and every paragraph lies a political decision that needs to be taken in the capitals,” Borrell said on Twitter on Monday. 

He added, “If these answers are positive, then we can sign this deal.”

Iran has made it clear that the text presented by Borrell was “proposals”, not a final text. However, Iran has started reviewing the EU proposals. Nour News, a website close to Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, says Iran has begun studying the EU text at the expert level. 

While Iran was busy studying the text, Western media went so far as to set a deadline for Iran. The Wall Street Journal has said that the West expects Iran to give an answer by August 15, a move that could further complicate the situation. 

On Friday, an Iranian diplomat told Iran’s state news agency IRNA that Iran is weighing the European Union’s proposals on the three thorny issues currently under discussion in Vienna: Safeguards, sanctions, and assurances. 
The diplomat said Iran would accept the European proposals only if they provided assurances to Iran in the forgoing issues, including the political allegations linked to the safeguards, sanctions, and guarantees.

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