Iranian Spokesman Laments EU’s Delay in Implementing INSTEX

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi took a swipe at the European Union for its delay in implementing the financial mechanism for trade with the Islamic Republic known as the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX).

Iranian Spokesman Laments EU’s Delay in Implementing INSTEX

Speaking to reporters at his weekly press conference in Tehran on Monday, Qassemi pointed to the US pressures on the EU and said Washington is opposed to the continuation of Tehran-Europe relations.   

“Unfortunately, we have not achieved the necessary results in this mechanism (the INSTEX), and there is a slowdown in this,” he said, adding, “We expect Europe to implement this mechanism.”

“We have told them (Europeans) that the patience of the Iranian people is limited and that they should proceed as quickly as possible,” the spokesman went on to say. 

Qassemi further referred to the EU’s preconditions for the implementation of its commitments, including Iran’s accession to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), saying that the JCPOA commitments of the EU have nothing to do with the FATF and the EU cannot set conditions for the Islamic Republic.

On February 4, Council of the European Union issued a conclusion on the Islamic Republic, urging Iran to “adopt and implement the necessary legislation pursuant to its commitments under the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Action Plan.”

The EU also voiced readiness to “continue cooperation with Iran in these areas, including by providing technical assistance for the implementation of the FATF Action Plan.”

Earlier on the same day, Iranian Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli Larijani stressed that the country would never accept the “humiliating conditions” of the European Union’s financial mechanism for trade with Iran, including Iran’s accession to FATF.

“The European countries have reportedly set two ‘strange conditions’ for the mechanism named the INSTEX,” the top judge deplored, saying, “The countries should be aware that Iran will by no means accept these humiliating conditions and will not accede to any demand at the expense of opening a small waterway such as INSTEX.”

INSTEX will be based in Paris and be managed by a German banking expert. Britain will head the supervisory board.

The European countries are reportedly going to use the channel initially only to sell food, medicine and medical devices in Iran.

In May 2018, the US president pulled his country out of the JCPOA, the nuclear deal that was achieved in Vienna in 2015 after years of negotiations among Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany).

Following the US exit, Iran and the remaining parties launched talks to save the accord.

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