The guide of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, pledged that his country would not yield to pressure, and affirmed that Iran could develop nuclear weapons, but it did not want that and would not change its approach to the agreement on its program.
He said during a meeting of leadership experts, with the participation of President Hassan Rouhani: “We are determined to possess nuclear capabilities in line with the country’s needs, and therefore Iran’s ceiling for enrichment will not be 20 percent, and we will act (up to) whatever level we need and the country requires, for example for the nuclear engine. Or other work, we can go to 60 percent enrichment. “
He stressed that Iran “will not yield to external pressure” and “will not give up its position regarding the nuclear agreement,” considering that the American and European approach towards it is unfair.
He explained, “The nuclear agreement is limited to several years, and if the opposite party implements it, Iran will implement it as well.”
And he added that the West uses nuclear weapons as a pretext against Iran while realizing that it is not seeking to acquire nuclear weapons, as he opposes
His country possesses even conventional weapons because “he wants to strip them of the factors of strength.”
He went on to say: Europe and America are talking arrogantly, and which one has not fulfilled its obligations in the nuclear deal … Iran implemented the nuclear agreement for a long time and the opposite party is the one who violated its obligations. And the reduction in nuclear obligations was a response to the breach by the opposing party of the nuclear agreement. “
And he considered that “the European position and statements are unfair and arrogant, and Tehran will not abandon its approach to the nuclear agreement.”
He added, “If Iran decides to manufacture nuclear weapons, the Zionist regime and anyone greater than it cannot prevent it from doing so.” However, he added, “What prevents Iran from developing nuclear weapons is its Islamic ideology and principles that prohibit the manufacture of nuclear or chemical weapons.”
He stressed that “Iran is not thinking of building nuclear weapons, and killing innocent people is an American Western method” that Tehran rejects.
He explained, however, that “Iran is determined to obtain the nuclear capabilities it needs and can proceed towards 60% enrichment for non-military purposes. He also stressed that Iran will not back down on the nuclear file and will proceed aggressively to obtain nuclear capabilities.”
And he considered that “the West wants Iran to need it in securing nuclear energy to turn it into a tool of blackmail and impose power” on his country.
In addition, the Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Rafael Grossi, announced on Sunday that a “abhorrent solution” would be reached that would allow the agency to continue inspections in Iran, despite Tehran beginning to reduce the work of international inspectors as of today.
“What we have agreed on is something viable … It is worthwhile to bridge this gap that we are facing now, this saves the situation now,” Grossi told reporters upon his return from a visit to Tehran, where he held talks with officials there.
Iran’s conservative-dominated Shura Council passed a law in December requiring the government to suspend the additional protocol and expel agency inspectors if the United States did not lift its banking and oil sanctions on the Islamic Republic.
The law is expected to take effect today.
Grossi said: “This law exists, and this law will be implemented, which means that the additional protocol, unfortunately, will be suspended.”
He added, “Our work will be restricted, to face this matter. But we were able to maintain the necessary degree of monitoring and verification work,” describing the new arrangements as a “temporary technical understanding.”
Grossi’s visit to Tehran came amid intense efforts being made between the administration of US President Joe Biden, European powers and Iran to save the 2015 nuclear deal, which was on the verge of collapse since the withdrawal of former US President Donald Trump from it.
The European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell said, “Intensive diplomatic contacts are taking place regarding the nuclear deal with Iran, involving many parties, including the United States.”
In statements prior to the start of the meeting of the European Union’s foreign ministers in Brussels, Borrell stressed that these contacts aim to discuss the possibility of the United States returning to the nuclear agreement, which he said would urge Tehran to fully adhere to the requirements of the agreement.
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken is scheduled to join the meeting via video technology. This meeting comes after Iran called on the European Union countries to play a mediating role with the new US administration regarding the nuclear deal.
Before participating in the European meeting, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said that the United States would seek to strengthen and extend the agreement concluded between world powers and Iran.
Blinken said in a recorded speech to the United Nations-sponsored Conference on Disarmament in Geneva: “The United States remains committed to Iran not obtaining a nuclear weapon. Diplomacy is the best path to achieving this goal.”
He added that US President Joe Biden said that if Iran returned to “strict adherence” to the nuclear agreement concluded in 2015, his administration would do the same.
He added, “We will also seek, through working with allies and partners, to prolong and strengthen the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (the nuclear agreement) and address other concerns such as Iran’s destabilizing behavior in the region and the development and proliferation of ballistic missiles.
He added, “Iran should comply with safeguards agreements with the agency and its international obligations.”
South Korea released Iranian money
In another development, the Iranian Central Bank announced that it had reached an agreement with the South Korean government, whereby the latter would release a “part” of Iran’s foreign currency reserves, which it is withholding due to US sanctions.
The Governor of the Central Bank of Iran, Abdel Nasser Hemeti, and South Korea’s ambassador to Tehran, Ryo Jeong-hyun, held a meeting on the aforementioned reserves in the capital, Tehran, according to the Iranian news agency Tasnim.
The meeting, which was held at the request of the Korean ambassador, reached an agreement to transfer “part” of the Iranian funds frozen in South Korea, due to the sanctions imposed by Washington on Tehran for years.
The Iranian agency did not indicate the size of the money that will be released.
Earlier this year, the Iranian government spokesman Ali Rabiei accused the South Korean government of seizing more than $ 7 billion in foreign currencies owned by Iran.
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