Statement by AEOI Spokesman at the 3rd Seminar on Iran-EU Civil Nuclear Cooperation

November 26, 2018

Weapon Program: 

  • Nuclear

Statement by H.E. B. Kamalvandi, AEOI spokesman and International, Legal and Parliamentary deputy at the 3rd seminar on Iran-EU civil nuclear cooperation held in Brussels, Monday, 26 November 2018

In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful, Distinguished Representatives,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is indeed a distinct honor and pleasure for me to participate here for this dignified gathering taking place for the 2nd time in Brussels. At the very outset, let me express, on my own behalf our deep gratitude and appreciation to the European Commission specially the European External Action Service as well as the Directorate General for Energy as the host.

At the first seminar, the idea of the “Expectations and Responsibilities” of both sides was raised to foster the already-present and developing cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the European Union.

City of Isfahan in November 2017 witnessed the second high-level successful seminar for international nuclear cooperation to review the “Progress and Prospect” of the cooperation to implement a crucial part of the JCPOA.

Now the European Union is kindly hosting in Belgium the 3rd seminar on Iran-EU civil nuclear cooperation, in which we are intending to discuss the areas of mutual interest for international nuclear cooperation between European Union and Iran, as envisioned in the JCPOA. I should mention two other important seminars heled in between subsequently in Moscow and Bejin which we are very much appreciative of our friends both in Russia and China.

I have no doubt that holding these series of seminars with the active cooperation of the denoted parties to the JCOPA, represents the importance of implementation of Annex III of the JCPOA which is one of the main pillars of the nuclear deal. The result of such gatherings is to flourish our peaceful nuclear cooperation, more transparency and a constructive exchange of knowledge and experiences.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Although discussed in detail in the previous meeting, I have no choice but to begin with one of the most pressing global concerns that is: the fate of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. The JCPOA is a significant and important hard-won multilateral deal which took the parties  from  all  sides  many  years  and  a  long  process  of  tough negotiations to reach. Ever since the agreement went into effect in January 2016, Iran, as stipulated in 13 consecutive IAEA reports, has fully complied with the provisions of the deal and implemented all its ensuing nuclear related commitments.

After the withdrawal of the US from the JCPOA, incumbent US administration re-imposed savage (cruel), unlawful and inhuman sanctions ever against Iran including in a hypocritical manner importation to Iran of medicine by puting the relevant importing and exporting companies on the list of sanctions. Iran's banking and energy sectors have been sanctioned by the US with the aim of cutting off Iran's oil sales and exports. The international community has widely condemned the US move to re-impose unlawful sanctions against Iran and the violation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231, which endorses the JCPOA. This action has placed in serious jeopardy the fate of this valuable and unique science-diplomacy achievement.

Trump Administration is challenging not only the Iranian nation but also the entire international community by openly adopting unilateral policies of denial regardless of its commitments as a responsible state. The U.S. withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, Paris agreement on climate change, UN Human Rights Council and so on, are just a few examples of U.S. irresponsibility to the international rules and treaties. This irresponsible attitude creates a doomed precedence and it could result consequently in chaotic circumstances that would ultimately deteriorate current international security crises thus needs to be quickly dealt with, and stopped urgently.

This is the reason, why the role of the remaining parties to the JCPOA and especially European Union is truly decisive in taking practical steps to save the deal and preserve the world from further lawlessness.

Thus,  given  the  circumstances,  the  responsibility  of  the  remaining parties is not limited to fulfilling their minimum commitments, rather we all must think of perpetuating the cooperative and multilateral nature of the deal by means of deepening our cooperation from current status to the most possible substantial level.

Fortunately, the Annex III of JCPOA has clearly determined the scope of our nuclear cooperation and its perspective, having seen the recent status of the ongoing projects between both sides, the process is on its way and until now a meaningful progress has been achieved.

In this direction, a series of successful projects in the domain of nuclear safety have been concluded to improve the nuclear safety and strengthen the capability of Iran’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority. Likewise, some truly fruitful scientific visits have been done by the Iranian experts to the high-tech research centers under the authorization of the European Commission, among these I can mention the last year successful visits of Iranian nuclear experts and scientist to JRC facilities in Geel and Petten and the Joint European Torus (JET) at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy in the UK. The latest of this kind which could be enumerated is the recent technical visit of the Iranian experts to ISPRA just few days ago.

Alongside, we appreciate the endeavors to define a joint annual calendar for the educational and training events mutually agreed and the participation of European scientists in “the first course of particle detection dosimetry and shielding (PDDS) school” on February 2018.

In this domain, the joint R&D working Group was established on September 2016 between the AEOI and the EC and consequently a roadmap for nuclear research actions under this working Group is signed at the conclusion of the previous high level seminar on International Nuclear Cooperation in Isfahan. Based on the perspective determined in this roadmap, a series of technical meetings has been already held between the experts of both sides and a set of areas and concrete subjects for joint research and development projects are clearly prescribed.

It is worthy to mention that on the Research & Development section, five areas is clearly enumerated in the Annex III of the JCPOA, namely “Light Water Power and Research Reactors”, “Nuclear Medicine and Radioisotopes”, “Waste Management”, “ Plasma Physics and Fusion Technology”, and “Security and Nuclear Safeguards” taking into consideration the large fields of R&D cooperation we have still a long way to go.

In the field of nuclear governance and legal aspects of nuclear technology, some fruitful joint educational events in form of Workshop and Law schools has been planned with the aim of enriching the both sides’ knowledge of each other’s nuclear law perspective. A workshop on civil liability with participation of a good number of Iranian and European  experienced  lawyers  and experts  is  successfully  held  in Vienna in July 2018.

We are cognizant very much of the need to improve our nuclear law and regulation and of course we are appreciatele the trend and level of European cooperation in this field.

In the field of nuclear safety, which was at the heart of Iran-EU nuclear cooperation from the early beginning of the implementation of the JCPOA, we are working very closely with the European Commission in frame of three major projects, namely “Stress tests at the Bushehr NPP, “Establishment of a Nuclear Safety Centre in Iran” and “Enhancing the Capabilities of INRA” with the objective to enhance the capability of the Iranian Nuclear Regulatory Authority in several nuclear safety areas. My colleagues  with  their  European  counterparts  in  this  seminar  will elaborate on the progress so far made in the field of safety and of course in other ereas beneficial to both sides.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

As you may see from the aforementioned status, we have apparently concluded the early stages of the implementation of the Annex III of JCPOA, which deserves our sincere appreciation to the European Commission for its constructive approach and good faith in bringing about the amity between Iranian and European nuclear industry sectors.

But in my perspective, which is seemingly agreeable to all of us, we are looking forward to step on the next phases of our nuclear cooperation, in which strengthening the current status and deepening the ongoing level of joint efforts on peaceful nuclear cooperation is definitely substantial and important.

Hence, It is the right time to show the world that the peaceful nuclear technology, in spite of its challengeable nature, could be considered as a basis for cooperation for the benefit of the people, and more importantly, there is always chance to bring about the peace and prosperity, even in the present decisive moments, in which the whole world needs multilateralism and joint efforts in conquering unilateralism more than ever.

Thanks you very much.