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EU adopts legislative framework to lift sanctions against Iran

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NewsGram Staff Writer

Brussels: The European Union (EU) adopted the legislative framework for lifting all of its nuclear-related economic and financial sanctions against Iran.

The announcement was made in a joint statement by EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif on Sunday, Xinhua reported.

Noting that October 18 is Adoption Day of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) related to the Iranian nuclear program, the statement said that the lifting of sanctions will take effect on Implementation Day, simultaneously with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)-verified implementation of agreed nuclear measures by Iran.

On July 14, Iran reached the JCPOA with P5+1, namely the US, Britain, France, Russia and China plus Germany, over its controversial nuclear program after more than 18 months of marathon talks.

The so-called “Adoption Day”, 90 days for the United Nations Security Council endorsed the Iranian deal. It means Iran and the P5+1 will start implementing the obligations under the Iranian nuclear deal.

“We have respected the timetable set out in the JCPOA, which demonstrates our collective will to stick to its provisions,” said the statement.”Iran will now start the implementation of its nuclear-related commitments with the objective of full and effective completion. The IAEA will make the necessary preparations for the monitoring and verification of these steps,” it said.

The Joint Commission foreseen under the JCPOA will now convene for its first meeting at the level of Political Directors on October 19 in Vienna, in order to further advance preparations for implementing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, according to the statement.

US President Barack Obama earlier on Sunday ordered his administration to take steps to lift sanctions on Iran by implementing the Iranian nuclear deal reached in July.

Head of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali-Akbar Salehi said on Sunday that the exact time for implementing the measures by Iran relating to JCPOA has not been decided so far, and it would be determined by president Hassan Rouhani.

According to the nuclear agreement between Iran and the world major countries reached on July 14 in the Austrian capital of Vienna, Iran would improve the transparency of its nuclear plan, downsize its capacity for uranium enrichment and do changes in the structure of its heavy water reactor in exchange for international and Western sanctions relief.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Iran Denounces US as Actual “Head of Global Terrorism”

China, an economic partner of Iran, urged countries outside the Middle East to promote peace and stability in the region and to avoid any acts of aggression

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iran, terrorism
In this photo released by the official website of the office of the Iranian Presidency, President Hassan Rouhani speaks during a ceremony marking "National Day of Nuclear Technology," in Tehran, Iran, April 9, 2019. VOA

Steve Herman contributed to this report from the White House; Carla Babb – from the Pentagon.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani denounced the United States Tuesday as the actual “head of global terrorism,” one day after the U.S. designated Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps as a terrorist organization.

The move was the first time the U.S. designated part of another government as a terrorist organization.

“This unprecedented step, led by the Department of State, recognizes the reality that Iran is not only a State Sponsor of Terrorism, but that the IRGC actively participates in, finances, and promotes terrorism as a tool of statecraft,” President Donald Trump declared in a statement. “The IRGC is the Iranian government’s primary means of directing and implementing its global terrorist campaign.”

The U.S. action, which takes effect next week and includes the IRGC’s elite secretive Quds Force, means it will be a federal crime to provide any type of support to the IRGC.

iran, terrorism
In this picture released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaks at a meeting with a group of Revolutionary Guards and their families, in Tehran, Iran, April 9, 2019. VOA

Rouhani said the U.S. designation would only bolster the reputation of the Revolutionary Guards and promote harmony among Iranians.

“This mistake will unite Iranians and the Guards will grow more popular in Iran and in the region,” Rouhani said. “America has used terrorists as a tool in the region while the Guards have fought against them from Iraq to Syria.”

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei addressed a group of guards Tuesday, describing the U.S. action as a “vicious move” that “will bear no fruit.” After Iran’s legislature convened for an open session in Tehran Tuesday, lawmakers dressed in paramilitary uniforms chanted, “Death to America.”

Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani criticized the U.S. decision as the “climax of stupidity and ignorance.” Supreme National Security Council spokesman Keivan Khosravi warned without elaborating that “any unusual move by American forces in the region will be perceived as the behavior by a terrorist group.”

China, an economic partner of Iran, urged countries outside the Middle East to promote peace and stability in the region and to avoid any acts of aggression.

iran, terrorism
After Iran’s legislature convened for an open session in Tehran Tuesday, lawmakers dressed in paramilitary uniforms chanted, “Death to America.” VOA

“We oppose power politics and bullying by any countries,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said.

Minutes after the announcement from the White House on the designation Monday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated the IRGC “organizes and executes terror campaigns around the world.”

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U.S. officials, in comments to reporters, are also referring to the IRGC as a “death cult” that, they say, is the true face of Iranian foreign policy.

Pompeo declined to say, when asked by a reporter, whether the terrorist designation means that the U.S. military will target IRGC leaders the same way it does those of the Islamic State group. Iran responded Monday to the U.S. action by putting U.S. military forces on its list of terror groups. (VOA)