Austrian UN envoy: Iran deal can go on without US

New York, Oct 10, IRNA – The Iran nuclear deal could be maintained without the United States, the permanent representative of Austria to the United Nations said on Tuesday.

Jan Kickert, during an exclusive interview with the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) in New York said that US possible decertification of the Iran deal is 'unjustified'.

Even if the US pulls out, but 'Iran sticks to its commitments on the JCPOA, I think, we can continue with this agreement,' Kickert said, referring to the nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

Saying that Iran has been complying with the deal, he added, 'We believe that of one party keeps its commitment to the contract, the other should also.'

Answering a question about the consequences of the US possible withdrawal from the July 2015 nuclear agreement, Kickert said that it will bring back the sanctions.

If there are new sanctions, 'it will be against not only the spirit but also the letter of the agreement,' he said.

'We hope that Iran will stick to its commitment, because then the other parties to the treaty, Europeans in particular, and also the Russians and the Chinese, will also stick to it,' he said.

Kickert said, 'First of all, we have to see what the President does, then we have to see what the Congress does.'

'But the European position is very clear: we believe that this treaty is a good one, and should be kept and all the commitments from all the parties should be kept,' the permanent representative of Austria to the UN said.

Talking about the Europeans' stand, after the possible pullout by the US, he said, 'There is no intention by the Europeans to pull out.'

The US Republican president faces an October 15 deadline for endorsing that Iran has been complying with the deal. The certification is needed by US law every 90 days in order for the Congress to continue to withhold nuclear-related sanctions against Iran.

Trump's administration has twice so far certified Iran’s compliance with the deal, but if he is, reportedly, going to refuses to do so for a third time, then the Congress will have 60 days to decide whether to re-impose sanctions waived under the deal. That would let Congress effectively decide whether to kill the historic deal.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the international body to observe the implementation of the NPT and the JCPOA, has affirmed Iran's commitment to the JCPOA eight times since implementing it in 2016.

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