The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden is considering easing the restrictive measures imposed on Iran during the Donald Trump administration in an effort to “revive” the nuclear deal, the Times reported, citing a source.
The publication notes that “despite the Biden administration’s insistence that it wants to sit down at the negotiating table first, there are signs that sanctions easing is not far off.”
“Sanctions relief is definitely on the way. Not today or tomorrow. But it’s on the way,” a knowledgeable national security source told the newspaper.
Bloomberg previously reported, citing sources familiar with the situation, that the Biden administration is mulling several options for how to ease Iran’s financial situation without lifting economic sanctions on the country.
Earlier, Peter Stano, a spokesman for the EU External Action Service, announced that the European Union was holding intensive consultations on the possibility of convening an informal meeting on the Iranian nuclear deal with the participation of the United States. For its part, the U.S. expressed interest in negotiating with Iran under the auspices of the EU and with the participation of the “six” international mediators, which includes Moscow and Beijing. In response to Washington’s statement, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh stressed that the “six” ceased to exist after the U.S. withdrew from the nuclear deal – only five mediators remained and pointed to the need to lift anti-Iranian sanctions.
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action concluded in 2015 by the “six” (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, and China) and Iran, which envisaged the lifting of sanctions in exchange for limiting Iran’s nuclear program as a guarantee that Tehran would not obtain nuclear weapons, did not last even three years: in May 2018, the US announced its unilateral withdrawal and the restoration of tough sanctions against Tehran.
Iran in 2019 – exactly one year after the U.S. withdrawal from the deal – announced a gradual reduction of its obligations under the agreement, abandoning restrictions on nuclear research, centrifuges, and uranium enrichment levels by early 2020.