04:57 GMT14 April 2021
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    Late last month, the Iranian Foreign Ministry accused the Biden administration of continuing "Trump's failed policy of maximum pressure" on Tehran and stated that the Islamic Republic does not consider the time to be "suitable" for an informal meeting over the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

    Former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has warned of national security-related implications if Washington returns to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

    "If this administration unwinds that and goes back to the crappy deal that we had with Iran when President Obama was in office, America will be less secure", Pompeo claimed during an interview with the US radio station 77WABC.

    The ex-secretary of state argued that apart from the US, Israel will also be less secure and that the entire Middle East region will be "less stable".

    "We didn't get all the way to where we would've hoped we could get in respect to getting Iran to stand down and enter an agreement that would've actually avoided them having a nuclear weapon, but we made an awful lot of progress", Pompeo added.

    The remarks come a couple of weeks after the White House reportedly said it was disappointed over Iran's rejection of an invitation to attend direct talks concerning the JCPOA.

    In this Jan. 15, 2011 file photo, Iran's heavy water nuclear facility is backdropped by mountains near the central city of Arak, Iran
    © AP Photo / ISNA, Hamid Foroutan, File
    In this Jan. 15, 2011 file photo, Iran's heavy water nuclear facility is backdropped by mountains near the central city of Arak, Iran

    At the same time, Washington signalled a readiness "to re-engage in meaningful diplomacy to achieve a mutual return to compliance with [the deal's] commitments".

    This followed Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh stating that Iran does not consider the time to be "suitable" for an informal meeting on the Iran deal.

    "There has still been no change in the US positions and behaviour yet", he added, referring to the Biden administration's drive to continue what the spokesman described as "Trump's failed policy of maximum pressure [on Iran]".

    Khatibzadeh emphasised that America must end "its illegal and unilateral sanctions and return to its [JCPOA] commitments", something that he said "needs neither negotiations nor resolutions".

    Earlier, the White House expressed a willingness to revive US participation in the Iran deal, also demanding that Tehran return to its commitments under the 2015 agreement. Tehran, for its part, insists that it is Washington that should take the first step by scrapping all economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

    Trump unilaterally withdrew the US from the JCPOA in May 2018, also reinstating harsh economic sanctions on Iran and citing alleged violations of the deal by Iran, who rejects the accusations.

    After the US left the deal, the Islamic Republic started stepping away from its JCPOA commitments, prompting criticism and allegations that the country was trying to develop nuclear weapons. Tehran has repeatedly underlined its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes only.

    Related:

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    Moscow, Tehran Interested in Full Restoration of Iran Nuclear Deal, Russian Foreign Minister Says
    Iran Should Comply With 2015 Nuclear Deal If It Wants US to Rejoin It, French Presidency Says
    Tags:
    withdrawal, sanctions, nuclear deal, Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Mike Pompeo, US, Iran
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