President Joe Biden's administration restored a sanctions waiver Friday to allow international nuclear cooperation projects amid final American-Iranian talks on reviving the 2015 international nuclear deal with Tehran.
The change in policy would allow other countries to cooperate on certain nonproliferation activities in order to return to the international nuclear agreement. Negotiators in Vienna are hoping to revive the Obama-era Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, known as the JCPOA. The move comes as US officials warn that there are only weeks left to salvage the Iran nuclear deal.
The waivers, which were rescinded in 2019 and 2020 under former President Donald Trump, had allowed Russian, Chinese, and European companies to carry out nonproliferation work. Back in April 2021, the Biden administration's State Department announced that the United States was prepared then to remove sanctions on Iran to resume the nuclear deal operations.
"The waiver with respect to these activities is designed to facilitate discussions that would help to close a deal on a mutual return to full implementation of the [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] and lay the groundwork for Iran’s return to performance of its JCPOA commitments," the State Department said in a notice.
"It is also designed to serve US non-proliferation and nuclear safety interests and constrain Iran's nuclear activities," the State Department said. "It is being issued as a matter of policy discretion with these objectives in mind, and not pursuant to a commitment or as part of a quid pro quo. We are focused on working with partners and allies to counter the full range of threats that Iran poses."
Iran has come under strong criticism from other world powers due to what critics abroad claim are its poor record on issues such as human rights.
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