“Iran is interested in becoming a regional hub for the production of” Sputnik “

Photo of author

By admin

Iran intends to become a hub for Russian vaccine production in the Middle East. This was stated in an interview with Izvestia by the Ambassador of the Islamic Republic in Moscow Kazem Jalali… He noted that in the near future the production of Sputnik V under license will begin in the country; upon completion of vaccination of the population, it will begin exporting to neighboring states. The diplomat also clarified: Tehran is ready to return to the nuclear deal only after the lifting of all sanctions, without phased slownessbut Washington must take the first step in this direction. The ambassador stressed that Iran insists on reinstating the country in the SWIFT payment system and requires the European troika to do everything possible to make this happen.

“The US should lift all sanctions”

– On April 14 Iran began enriching uranium up to 60%, this is practically an application for obtaining weapons-grade uranium. Why does Tehran need it? Is the Islamic Republic about to build an atomic bomb?

– No no. We don’t want an atomic bomb, we don’t do this business… And you know that our supreme leader (Ayatollah Ali Khamenei – Ed.) Said that the production of an atomic bomb and even movement in this direction is haram, that is, a forbidden business. Therefore, in the context of our national will, we will not move towards the creation of an atomic bomb. But nonetheless we have the right to enrich uranium to any percentage. We use it mainly in medicine.

– The US State Department announced that it is considering the possibility of lifting some of the sanctions on Iran. If Washington begins to ease the restriction policy, is Tehran ready to return to the implementation of a number of provisions of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in response? What will these provisions be?

– As you know, negotiations are now underway in Vienna between Iran and three European countries, plus China and Russia. It is not yet clear what results the parties will achieve. All the responsible persons of our country unanimously said that it was the United States withdrew from the JCPOA, they violated it and, contrary to the agreement, imposed sanctions against Iran. therefore the first step in restoring the deal must be made by the Americans

The scheme is as follows: they must lift all sanctions, we verify itto prove that their withdrawal took place in fact, that this is not an artificial and not a formal matter. After that, Iran will return to fulfill all its obligations… We have never withdrawn from the JCPOA, but nevertheless, against the background of Europeans ‘inaction and the Americans’ violation of obligations, we have reduced the level of some of our obligations.

Iran’s proposal: instead of lengthy negotiations and instead of defining step by step what we will do, let’s take two steps, one is us, one is the americans… This is absolutely feasible and, most importantly, promptly. If, of course, the Americans have the will to return to their obligations.

– Is there a deadline for the United States to submit all its proposals for the JCPOA?

“You see, several aspects have a small window of opportunity. Iranian parliament after assassination [физика-ядерщика Мохсена] Fakhrizadeh adopted a law in November 2020, according to which the additional protocol of the IAEA will not be implemented, the level of cooperation will be lowered. According to the agreement between Iran and the agency, the IAEA will not have access to nuclear facilities in Iran for three months, cameras will work there, which will continue to monitor the activities of Iran and record everything that happens.

If an agreement is reached in three months, all these records will be transferred to the IAEA… If no agreement is reached, the documentation will not be handed over. One and a half months have passed from the designated three months. That is, there is still a month and a half left to come to an agreement.

On the other hand, Iranian people cannot wait for lengthy negotiations with Americans to end… Because sanctions have been imposed against us, we are fighting the coronavirus and we are coping with these challenges. But time is important, so we want to summarize the negotiations as soon as possible.

– So Iran expects the US to return to the deal before the summer?

– I did not say that. You said: is there a certain time? I replied that yes, there are such time limits. I will tell you that they (the Americans – Ed.) Must fulfill all their obligations today.

– Are you talking about the restoration of the nuclear deal on the previous terms, or is Iran ready to discuss possible innovations?

– You know, The JCPOA is a definite agreement, it does not provide that something can be subtracted or added… Therefore, the JCPOA, which was adopted on July 14, 2015, must be restored. If Iran wanted to resort to a different method under strong pressure from Mr Trump, it would agree to his terms.

The new US administration should know: maximum pressure even in the most severe coronavirus conditions could not lead to the Iranian people capitulating to them. Therefore, Washington must change its method, it must return to the same JCPOA in the same form that was adopted.

– Is Iran ready to include in the JCPOA the ballistic missile clause that the US is talking about, or to conclude an agreement on missiles as a separate one, not including it in the nuclear deal?

– Iran will not accept anything superfluous in the JCPOA. The Islamic Republic’s missile activities are part of our national security and we will not allow anyone to interfere

“We disagree with the step by step proposal”

– How true are the reports that Tehran has begun negotiations with Washington on the restoration of Iran’s banking system in the SWIFT payment system? When can Tehran return to this system?

One of the obligations of the European troika as participants in the JCPOA is to provide special financial mechanisms, including SWIFT, for persons, as well as those bodies that are indicated in the additional protocol. It includes such bodies as the Central Bank of Iran and our financial institutions, they are indicated there. Therefore, yes, our requirements are absolutely in line with the JCPOA and we insist on lifting all sanctions, including those related to the SWIFT system… We insist on the restoration of Iran in this payment system.

– Is Iran satisfied with such a scheme: before the presidential elections, the United States lifts sanctions on the oil sector, and after the elections all the rest?

– Our high-ranking officials have repeatedly said that we will not conduct long-term negotiations, we do not agree with this step-by-step proposal. All actions must be taken in one go, they must be accumulated in one step.

“The presence of Russia is important for maintaining peace”

– The Financial Times, citing sources, reported on the talks between Saudi Arabia and Iran. How true is this?

– I also saw this news in the media, but I have no exact information. Our policy has always been definite: we want to have the best relations with our neighbors, and on the other hand, we believe that regional security should be ensured precisely by the efforts of regional states.

The presence of extra-regional and foreign forces will certainly harm the region and, of course, complicate the situation there.… In these conditions, we are ready to hold consultations with all neighboring countries, develop and expand our cooperation.

– You said that extra-regional forces should not be present, because they are causing damage. Does this apply to Russia?

– Not. Firstly, Russia is very close to this region, it is a country that plays a big role here. Secondly, it does not have aggressive sentiments and its presence in various parts of the world is important for maintaining peace and security.

– Earlier there were reports on the supply of 60 million doses of the Russian vaccine to Iran. Is it known when the production of Sputnik V will start in Iran? Will Iran export the vaccine to neighboring countries?

– We hope that the production of Sputnik V in our country will start soon. Iran is interested in becoming a regional hub for the production of a Russian drug… When the vaccine is produced in our country, it will be licensed by the Russian Federation, Moscow and Tehran will jointly decide where to send the vaccine. But one thing is clear for sure: when we complete the vaccination of our people, we will certainly be ready to help others.