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Iran nuclear deal: European powers reject 'ultimatums'

May 10, 2019 5:08 am

European powers have said they remain committed to the Iran nuclear deal but that they “reject any ultimatums” from Tehran to prevent its collapse.

Iran announced on Wednesday that it had suspended two commitments under the 2015 accord in response to the economic sanctions the US reimposed last year.

It also threatened to step up uranium enrichment if it was not shielded from the sanctions’ effects within 60 days.

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The EU, UK, France and Germany noted “with great concern” Iran’s move.

Under the nuclear deal, which is known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran agreed to limit its nuclear activities in return for sanctions relief.

But a year ago US President Donald Trump abandoned the deal, saying it was “horribly one-sided” and needed to be renegotiated, and began reinstating sanctions. In November, those targeting Iran’s oil and financial sectors took effect.

Iran’s economy is now sliding towards a deep recession, the value of its currency has dropped to record lows, and its annual inflation rate has quadrupled.

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