US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has warned that time is running out for Iran to return to the 2015 deal over its nuclear program amid concerns that efforts to revive the deal will fail.
“The ball is still in their court, but that won’t last long. The runway is limited and it’s getting shorter,” Blinken said, in a press statement he made Thursday in Pittsburgh.
He added that “merely returning to the terms of the JCPOA at some point will not be enough to benefit from the benefits of the agreement, given the progress Iran has made” in developing its nuclear program.
Blinken stressed that the United States was fully prepared to abide by the nuclear agreement, but considered that “Iran has shown that it is not ready.”
Since April, Vienna has hosted 6 rounds of negotiations under the auspices of the European Union to save the agreement on the Iranian nuclear program in light of the United States’ withdrawal from it in 2018 during the term of its former president, Donald Trump, who imposed painful sanctions on the Iranian party, to which the latter responded by reducing its commitments to the deal since 2019.
Official talks were held between Iran on one side and Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany on the other, but the European Union and Washington had previously confirmed the United States’ participation in the dialogue without engaging in any direct contacts with the Iranian side.
Tehran refuses to negotiate directly with the Biden administration before lifting sanctions, while Washington insists on the need to advance the principle of step for step.
The negotiations later stopped in light of the changes in the executive authority in Iran against the backdrop of the presidential elections in August, which were won by the conservative candidate, Ibrahim Raisi.