US says latest Iran response on nuclear deal ‘not constructive’

Under the 2015 pact, Iran had curbed its nuclear program in return for relief from US, EU and UN sanctions. PHOTO: REUTERS

DUBAI - Iran has sent a response to US proposals aimed at reviving Teheran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Nasser Kanaani was quoted by state media as saying on Friday, but the US characterised the response as "not constructive".

"The text that was sent (by Iran) has a constructive approach aimed at finalising the negotiations," Kanaani, was quoted as saying by state broadcaster IRIB.

The United States said on Thursday it had received a new response from Iran on reviving a nuclear deal but that it was not “constructive”.

“We are studying it and will respond through the EU, but unfortunately it is not constructive,” State Department spokesman Vedant Patel said.

The IRIB report said Iran's response was sent to EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, who has been coordinating the negotiations. It gave no further details.

After 16 months of indirect talks between Teheran and Washington, Borrell said on Aug 8 the EU had laid down a final offer to overcome an impasse for the revival of the agreement.

Iran needs stronger guarantees from Washington for the revival of a 2015 nuclear deal, its foreign minister said on Wednesday, adding that the UN atomic watchdog should drop its "politically motivated probes" of Teheran's nuclear work.

Under the 2015 pact, Iran had curbed its nuclear program in return for relief from US, EU and UN sanctions.

Then US President Donald Trump reneged on the deal in 2018, arguing that it was too generous to Teheran. He reimposed US sanctions on Iran, leading Teheran to resume previously banned nuclear activities and reviving US, European and Israeli fears that Iran may seek an atomic bomb.

Iran denies any such ambition. REUTERS

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