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UN Security Council lifts sanctions off Iranian bank

US to pay Iran $1.7 bn in debt and interest, Kerry; However a number of restrictive measures envisaged by resolution 2231 are still in effect

U.S. Secretary of State Kerry,   Iranian FM Zarif and EU envoy Ashton pose for photographers in Vienna


The United States is to repay Iran a $400 million debt and $1.3 billion in interest dating to the Islamic revolution, Secretary of State John Kerry said Sunday, AP reports.

The repayment, which settles a suit brought under an international legal tribunal, is separate from the tens of billions of dollars in frozen foreign accounts that Iran can now access after the end of nuclear sanctions, According to AP.

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But the timing of the announcement, one day after the implementation of the Iran nuclear accord, will be seen as pointing to a broader clearing of the decks between the old foes.

The United Nations Security Council has crossed out Iranian bank Sepah and its international subsidiary Sepah International from its sanction list, according to a release issued on Sunday, said TASS

International sanctions imposed on Iran by United Nations Security Council resolutions in 2006-2011 were lifted on Saturday after Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano said in a statement that Iran had carried out all the measures required to start implementing the nuclear deal. However a number of restrictive measures envisaged by resolution 2231 are still in effect.

Sepah was put on the sanction list on March 24, 2007 on charges of offering financial support to the Iran Aviation Industries Organization and its subsidiaries subject to sanctions under resolution 1737 (2006) adopted after Teheran had refused to stop its uranium-enrichment activities.

On Saturday, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) published a report confirming Iran’s complete fulfilment of its liabilities under the nuclear deal with the six world powers, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Following IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano’s report, European foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif announced the so-called “Implementation Day” and lifting of all anti-Iranian sanctions.

Iran and the P5+1 group of international mediators (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and Germany) signed a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on Iran’s nuclear program on July 14, 2015 in Vienna. Under the JCPOA, Iran undertakes to reduce the number of IR-1 first-generation centrifuges at the facility in Natanz from 19, 000 to 6, 100, of which only 5, 060 will be used to enrich uranium in a period of ten years. Apart from that, Iran undertook not to manufacture weapons-grade plutonium, to have not more than 300 kilograms of 3.67% enriched uranium in a period of 15 years, to reshape nuclear facilities and use them exclusively in peaceful purposes. Enrichment activities will be allowed only at the facility in Natanz. The Fordow facility is to be reshaped to manufacture stable isotopes for industrial and medical uses. The heavy water reactor in Arak is to be overhauled to exclude weapons-grade plutonium production. All other centrifuges are to be dismantled and stored under control of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

In exchange, sanctions will be gradually removed from Iran. The arms embargo imposed by UN Security Council will be kept in place for five years, ban for supplying ballistic missile technologies to Iran – for eight years. Experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will monitor nuclear facilities in Iran for the next 25 years. If any points of the agreement are violated by Iran, sanctions against the country will be renewed. On July 20, the corresponding resolution on Iran’s nuclear program agreement was adopted by the United Nations Security Council.



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