Iran may review cooperation with UN nuclear watchdog IAEA if EU pressure mounts

An Iranian flag flutters among other flags in front of the International Atomic Energy Agency headquarters in Vienna on Sept 9, 2019. PHOTO: REUTERS

TEHERAN (REUTERS) - Iran will review its cooperation with the United Nations' nuclear watchdog over any "unjust" measures, Iranian parliament speaker Ali Larijani said after European powers last week triggered a dispute mechanism under Teheran's 2015 nuclear deal.

"We state openly that if the European powers, for any reason, adopt an unfair approach in using the dispute mechanism, we will seriously reconsider our cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)," State TV quoted Larijani as saying.

France, Britain and Germany triggered the mechanism in the deal after Teheran continued to distance itself from the pact by decreasing its nuclear commitments in reaction to sanctions reimposed by Washington since the United States quit the agreement in 2018.

Teheran announced last week that it would abandon limitations under the deal on enriching uranium, though it said that Iran would continue cooperating with the UN nuclear watchdog, which is policing the nuclear pact.

Under the deal between Iran and six major powers, Teheran agreed to curb its nuclear programme in exchange for lifting international sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

The three European nations said they still wanted the 2015 nuclear deal to succeed and were not joining a "maximum pressure" campaign by the United States.

Triggering the mechanism amounts to formally accusing Iran of violating the terms of the deal and could lead eventually to reimposing UN sanctions that were lifted under the pact.

The mechanism involves a Joint Commission, whose members are Iran, Russia, China, Germany, France, Britain and the European Union, seeking to resolve the dispute.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.