14:36 GMT +303 December 2016
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    Head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization Ali Akbar Salehi, center, speaks in an open session of parliament while discussing a bill on Iran's nuclear deal with world powers, in Tehran

    US and EU Could Lift Iranian Sanctions This Weekend

    © AP Photo/ Ebrahim Noroozi
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    The United States and the European Union are expected to formally lift sanctions against Iran this weekend.

    The world powers and Iran last summer struck a landmark nuclear deal, in which Tehran agreed to curb its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of international sanctions.

    Now, Iran is poised to finally feel the effects of the accord, including an end to the EU embargo of Iranian oil imports and reestablished ties between Iranian banks and the European financial system.

    According to Abbas Araqchi, Iran’s deputy foreign minister and senior nuclear negotiator, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Friday will verify that Tehran has fulfilled all its obligations under the agreement, including unplugging thousands of centrifuges and significantly reducing its stockpile of low-enriched uranium, the Guardian reported.

    That report by the IAEA will trigger the announcement of an “implementation day,” when the lifting of US and EU sanctions will come into effect and all previous nuclear-related UN resolutions will be terminated. Tehran expects this to happen Saturday or Sunday.

    “The IAEA inspectors are supposed to issue their final report on Iran’s honoring of its commitments on Friday,” Araghchi was quoted by local news agencies as saying.

    US Secretary of State John Kerry, speaking in Washington, said the nuclear deal is likely to be implemented in the coming days.

    “As agreed, Iran is now well on its way to dismantling critical elements of its nuclear facilities,” Kerry said. “Just yesterday, the foreign minister reported to me that the calandria of the plutonium nuclear reactor is now out and in the next hours it will be filled with concrete and destroyed.”

    “We will ensure that the spectre of a nuclear armed Iran is removed as a threat to Middle East security and global peace, and it is not insignificant that Iran has agreed to submit to this, agreed to undertake these steps, agreed that it will not build this weapon,” he added.

    Non-nuclear related US sanctions on Iran, such as those relating to terrorism, will remain in place.

    Tags:
    nuclear deal, sanctions, European Union, Abbas Araqchi, John Kerry, United States, Iran
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    • jas
      Non-nuclear related US sanctions on Iran, such as those relating to terrorism, will remain in place.
      --
      In other words, no matter what Iran does, the West is going to find some excuse for sanctions because that's what the Israelis want.
    • KSA will be in a fully sick tantrum when they read this :)
    • Tariq A
      Israel got just one week to get an Iranian carry out a terror attack on US soil, or at least anywhere in Europe (Sweden has angered them recently). If that doesn't happen, Israelis can picture themselves thrown under the bus.
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