US denies claims it will lift all Iran sanctions

US denies Iranian claims that Washington will lift all sanctions to revive nuclear deal
2 min read
25 June, 2021
The State Department said that talks about re-entering the multilateral nuclear agreement were ongoing and that special envoy for Iran Robert Malley was planning the next round of talks.
An Iranian nuclear power plant south of Tehran [Getty]

The US has rebuffed claims by Iranian senior officials that all sanctions on Tehran's oil and shipping industry will be lifted in an effort to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

The chief of staff to outgoing Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that 1,040 sanctions imposed by former US President Donald Trump will be lifted in exchange for Tehran resuming compliance with the nuclear accord, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

"An agreement has been reached to remove all insurance, oil and shipping sanctions" Mahmoud Vaezi told Iranian state media. These include sanctions on individuals and members of the supreme leader's inner circle, the official added.

Then-US President Barack Obama's administration had offered Tehran billions in sanctions relief in exchange for agreeing to curb its nuclear program. Since Trump abandoned the deal in 2018 and reimposed harsh economic sanctions, Tehran has stepped up its nuclear activities.

A State Department spokesperson contradicted the Iranian official in an interview with Forbes, denying that the US had agreed to this matter.

"Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed," the spokesperson, who was not named by Forbes, said.

"We still have serious differences that have not been bridged."

Further talks between Iran and global powers took place in Vienna on June 20 to examine a draft text on steps to revive the JCPOA.

The State Department said that talks about re-entering the multilateral nuclear agreement were ongoing and that special envoy for Iran Robert Malley was planning the next round of talks.

The negotiations coincided with Iran's election of hardliner Ebrahim Raisi, who was voted into the presidential office in a race that was widely seen as being designed to favour him.

The US regretted Iranians were not able to participate in a "free and fair electoral process".

Earlier this week, the US blocked about three dozen Iranian websites, in response to "brazen attempts" on the part of Iran to spread disinformation and mislead Americans.

Each site had displayed a single page with a statement that it "has been seized by the United States Government" and making reference to US sanctions laws, accompanied by the seal of the FBI and the US Department of Commerce.

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