Iran wants billions in credit before reopening nuclear talks with the European Union
dpa, Hamburg, Germany
Iran said on Wednesday that Europe must offer 15 billion dollars in credit before the two sides can start any fresh nuclear negotiations, a senior Iranian diplomat said on Wednesday.
Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said the loan package recently discussed during talks in Paris would be compensation for the oil sales Iran lost as a result of crippling US sanctions.
Once the credit is extended, Iran would begin talks with Europe on returning to compliance with the 2015 deal, Araghchi said, according to the Iranian news agency Isna.
The agreement put constraints on Iran’s nuclear programme in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. The US has pulled out of the deal and reimposed sanctions, leaving the European Union scrambling to save it.
With the deal on life support, Tehran has reduced its commitment to it, for instance by increasing its stockpile of enriched uranium and refining it to a higher purity.
Iran Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif met French President Emmanuel Macron at last month’s G7 summit in Biarritz, where they discussed economic relief measures the EU could offer.
Araghchi said the terms of the credit proposal have yet to be nailed down and that “serious difference” remain, including whether it would be transferred in multiple instalments.
But Iran has said it will not agree to any deal that would also put restrictions on its ballistic missile programme and its support for allies and proxies in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen.
“We will not negotiate with anyone about our red lines,” Araghchi said.
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