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Iran’s withdrawal from nuclear deal unlikely, expert says

August 15, 2017, 13:22 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Hassan Rouhani said earlier that Tehran was ready to quit the nuclear deal "within hours", if the US continues to expand sanctions

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© AP Photo/Virginia Mayo

MOSCOW, August 15. /TASS/. Iran’s withdrawal from the agreement on Tehran’s nuclear program is highly unlikely, this is not in the interests of either Tehran or other major players, except for the US, Vladimir Fitin, Head of the Middle East Center at the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies (RISS), told TASS. He thus commented on remarks by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani concerning Tehran’s readiness to quit the nuclear deal within hours, if the US continues to expand sanctions.

"I believe this is a traditional exchange of belligerent statements with a certain region or country typical of the new US administration," the expert noted. "We just need to say that, with the advent of the Trump administration, the Americans designated Iran as its chief enemy and opponent and are trying to deliberately translate all that into reality."

As for Iran’s response, Fitin drew attention to the fact that Tehran decided to earmark additional $520 million for the development of its missile program. "Withdrawal from the nuclear deal is unlikely today, since all the major players involved in the Iranian nuclear issues would strongly oppose the termination of this agreement," he said. "Europe and other countries favor establishing and reviving economic relations with Iran."

"Europe, China and, naturally, Russia strongly oppose the termination of this deal," Fitin emphasized. "Naturally, American businesses are showing their interests. Specifically, the US would like to sell Boeing airliners to Iran. "Therefore, I believe that the parties will refrain from whipping up tensions now."

If Washington imposes fresh sanctions on Iran’s military-industrial complex, that could lead to greater tensions, he said. "Iran has been able to adapt itself to the sanctions that have been imposed since 1979, so they will hardly mark some big changes for it, even if the agreement is disavowed," Fitin noted. "Of course, this meets neither the interests of Iran nor of major players, except for the Americans."

Concerning the convening of the P5+1 group to resolve the situation around Iran, the expert noted that "so far no one came up with such an initiative."

"Everything boils down to some verbal statements, and there is no immediate risk of the nuclear deal being terminated. That is why no one suggests any urgent meeting of the group of six world powers," he concluded.

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