UPDATE 4-Iran reviews US response to EU nuclear text for revival of 2015 pact

UPDATE 4-Iran reviews US response to EU nuclear text for revival of 2015 pact

(Adds details on Israel threats, oil prices)

By Parisa Hafezi

DUBAI, Aug 24 (Reuters) – Iran has received Washington’s response to a final EU-crafted offer to salvage Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal with major powers, Iran’s Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday. without giving a firm indication of how close they are to closing the remaining gaps. .

After 16 months of irregular and indirect US-Iran talks, with EU officials shifting between sides, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Aug. within “very, very few weeks.”

“Tonight, Iran received the US response through the European Union. Careful review of the response began in Tehran,” said Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani.

“Iran will share its vision with the EU, as coordinator of the nuclear negotiations, after the conclusion of the Tehran review.”

Iran last week responded to the EU text with “additional views and considerations”, while urging the United States to show flexibility in resolving three remaining issues.

US State Department spokesman Ned Price confirmed that Washington responded to Tehran’s comments on the EU text. “Our review of these comments is now complete. We responded to the EU today,” Price said.

Oil prices ended higher on Wednesday after volatile trading on concerns the United States will not consider additional concessions to Iran in response to a draft deal that would restore Tehran’s nuclear deal – and potentially its oil exports. OPEC member oil.

Then-US President Donald Trump reneged on the nuclear deal in 2018, saying it was too lenient on Iran, and reimposed tough sanctions on the Islamic Republic, prompting Tehran to start violating the deal’s nuclear restrictions a year later.

A revival of the pact appeared close in March, before 11 months of indirect negotiations between Tehran and Washington in Vienna failed over differences such as Iran’s demand that the United States provide assurances that no future president would exit the deal as Trump did.

US President Joe Biden cannot provide such rigid guarantees because the agreement is a political understanding and not a legally binding treaty.

A senior US official told Reuters on Monday that Iran has dropped some of its key demands to resurrect the deal to curb Tehran’s nuclear program, including its insistence that international inspectors close some investigations of its atomic program, bringing closer the possibility of an agreement.

But Iran’s nuclear chief Mohammad Eslami appeared to contradict that on Wednesday, saying investigations must be closed “before implementation day” if the 2015 nuclear deal is revived.

Shadowing the backdrop of efforts to save the nuclear pact are Israel’s threats to attack Iran’s nuclear facilities if it deems diplomacy futile in containing Tehran’s atomic abilities and potential.

Iran warned that it would strike back hard if attacked.

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said on Wednesday that “a bad deal is now on the table” that would give Tehran $100 billion a year to destabilize the Middle East. (Reporting by Parisa Hafezi in Dubai Additional reporting by Daphne Psaledakis in Washington Editing by Jonathan Oatis, Kirsten Donovan and Matthew Lewis)

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