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EghtesadOnline: Iran's nuclear deal can be saved only if all parties fulfill their commitments, a senior official said on Saturday, while criticizing US unilateral sanctions against Tehran.

"JCPOA can remain in place only if all sides meet their obligations in a balanced way and the Islamic Republic of Iran receives the economic benefits promised under the deal," First Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri was quoted as saying by IRNA. 

He made the statements during the 18th meeting of the Council of Heads of Government of the Member States of Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in reference to the nuclear deal signed between Tehran and world powers in 2015, which is officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. 

US President Donald Trump last year pulled his country out of the agreement, which gave Iran sanctions relief in exchange for limits on its nuclear program. Washington has since reimposed and toughened US sanctions on Iran despite international opposition, according to Financial Tribune.

"The cruel and unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States are a clear example of economic terrorism and a flagrant violation of the principles of international law and the UN Charter," Jahangiri said, adding that the international community has a responsibility to confront US unilateralism. 



Multilateral Diplomacy 

The first vice president called the nuclear deal an "effective" and "successful" example of multilateral diplomacy and said Iran has always left open the door to dialogue to resolve the situation surrounding the agreement.  

The European powers are scrambling to protect trade with Iran but what they can achieve pales in comparison to US sanctions aimed at slashing Iran's vital oil exports to zero. 

In response to US sanctions and Europe's failure to make good on its promises, Iran has been surpassing the limits on its atomic activities step by step.

It has so far exceeded the deal's limits on nuclear enrichment purity and stockpiles of enriched uranium as well as research and development, including on the advancement of centrifuges used to enrich uranium, and has promised more cuts in its commitments unless Europe acts.

Jahangiri reiterated Iran's stance that these measures are "reversible" if the country's demands under the nuclear accord are met.



Regional Cooperation   

In his speech,t The first vice president said Iran pays special attention to cooperation with other countries in the region. 

"Regional organizations have an important role in promoting multilateralism in the international system, and Shanghai Cooperation Organization can be a pioneer in this regard." 

Jointly led by Russia and China, SCO was launched in 2001 to address regional security, political and economic challenges, particularly threats posed by extremism and drug trafficking from neighboring Afghanistan.

The eight-member group also includes Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and, since 2017, Pakistan and India.

Iran is currently an observer member at the organization, though it has long sought full membership. 

Despite the fact that legal obstacles on the path of Iran's accession to the group were removed after the lifting of international sanctions against Iran under the nuclear deal, opposition by some countries has prevented Tehran from becoming a full member.

Jahangiri said Iran will spare no efforts to contribute to regional efforts aimed at achieving long-lasting peace, security and prosperity and added that Tehran's accession to the bloc can help strengthen it. 


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