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European powers call on Iran to cooperate with UN nuclear watchdog

Published: Updated:

European powers on Friday called on Iran to cooperate with the UN’s nuclear watchdog the IAEA, after Tehran warned that undue pressure from the US and Israel could jeopardize the agency’s activities in Iran.

In a joint statement, Britain, France, Germany and the EU’s foreign policy chief said they “strongly urge Iran to reverse all activities that are inconsistent with its commitments” under the 2015 deal on its nuclear program and “to cooperate with the IAEA on all relevant matters, including safeguards issues.”

The four European signatories of the 2015 accord on Iran’s nuclear program said they were “deeply concerned” by an IAEA report that showed Iran was installing advanced centrifuges.

Expressing fears that the nuclear deal “further unravels,” they urged Iran “to reverse all activities that are inconsistent with its commitments.”

US President Donald Trump last year pulled out of the deal on curbing Iran’s nuclear program and reimposed crippling economic sanctions, throwing the accord into jeopardy.

European powers led by French President Emmanuel Macron have been scrambling to try to save the accord and to convince Iran, which has begun reneging on some of its nuclear commitments, to abide by the agreement.

Tehran on Wednesday accused the US and Israel of applying “undue pressure” on the IAEA to vet its nuclear program and warned it could be “counterproductive” to its cooperation with the agency.

Tehran’s ambassador to the IAEA, Kazem Gharib Abadi, said statements by Israel and the US could jeopardize Iran’s “constructive, timely and proactive cooperation” with the watchdog.

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