EU will strengthen attempts to revive Iran nuclear deal

European Union denounces Iran's violations of 2015 nuclear deal but says it will strengthen its attempts to keep the deal alive.

Elad Benari ,

European Union flag
European Union flag

The European Union said on Tuesday it would redouble its efforts to save the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement despite Iran’s “important breach” of commitments made in the deal, The Associated Press reported.

Iran officially announced on Monday that it had resumed enrichment of uranium at its underground site in Fordow, in the latest violation of the 2015 deal.

EU spokesman Peter Stano said on Tuesday that Iran’s actions “will have serious implications when it comes to nuclear nonproliferation.”

Stano said it was in everyone’s interest to rescue the deal and said the 27-nation bloc “will strengthen” its attempts to make sure all adhere to the commitments made in the landmark deal.

Increasing enrichment at Fordow puts Tehran a technical step away from weapons-grade levels of 90%. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the action was “fully reversible" if other partners in the deal fully complied too, without elaborating.

Iran has gradually scaled back its compliance with the 2015 deal in response to US President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the agreement in May of 2018.

President-elect Joe Biden has taken a different approach to the Iran deal than Trump and has expressed a desire to rejoin the deal. He recently told The New York Times that he would do so if Iran returned to compliance with it.

The Iranian government, however, has ruled out the possibility of renegotiating the nuclear deal, saying it was fully discussed in detail five years ago and needs no renegotiations.

The European signatories to the deal - Britain, France and Germany - have been trying in vain in recent years to save the agreement. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas last month called for negotiations with Iran to conclude a broader nuclear deal.