Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs has said European countries should take practical steps to protect the Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action (JCPOA).

Iran Press/Iran news: Pointing to a recent action by Germany, Britain and France, creating a special trade channel with Iran called INSTEX, Abbas Araghchi criticised the length of the process of forming this mechanism and said on Monday: "We expect the European side to make a more serious effort for practical and tangible results, making INSTEX operational as soon as possible."

Speaking with German Foreign Office’s Director for relations with the Middle East and North Africa, Philip Ackermann in Tehran, Araghchi added: "Preserving the JCPOA is not achieved only through political will, and Europe has to take practical steps in this regard," Iran Press reported.

Earlier on November 26, Araghchi who was one of top nuclear negotiators during the tough talks leading up to the JCPOA, told a seminar on peaceful nuclear cooperation between Iran and the European Union in Brussels that the JCPOA was an important achievement both for Iran and the EU.

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For his part, Ackermann emphasised on Berlin's support for Iran's nuclear program.

Pointing to the importance of JCPOA as signifying success of multilateral diplomacy, the German official criticized the US decision to exit JCPOA and stressed on Germany's support for the Iran nuclear deal, known formally as the Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action (JCPOA).

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"European countries are more interested in working with Iran after the formation of a new mechanism and Berlin's top priority is an attempt to put it into practice," Ackermann said in reaction to the INSTEX financial mechanism.

The UK, France, and Germany, three of the European signatories to the 2015 nuclear agreement, issued a joint statement on January 31, announcing the launch of the long-awaited direct non-dollar payment mechanism meant to protect their trade ties with the country in the face of the United States sanctions.

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EU launches INSTEX to facilitate trade with Iran

On May 8, 2018, US President Donald Trump called the nuclear accord - or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) as it is formally known - a "horrible, one-sided deal that should have never, ever been made" and withdraw from the deal. 

Washington afterward returned the sanctions that it had lifted under the accord.

The European signatories, though, issued a statement afterward, reasserting their commitment to the JCPOA.

It should be noted that Araghchi left Tehran for Vienna on Tuesday morning to participate in JCPOA joint commission meeting on Wednesday.

Co-chaired by Araghchi and European External Action Service Helga Schmid, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) joint commission meeting will be held in Vienna, Austria on Wednesday, with deputy foreign ministers of Germany, UK, France, Russia, and China in attendance.

According to reports, Araghchi will also hold separate meetings with some of his counterparts and also with Helga Schmid on Tuesday.


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EU stands to Iran-JCPOA not enough: Araqchi

Iranian official: US withdrawal from JCPOA harms int'l community