Iran says ‘no step-by-step plan’ for lifting US sanctions

Iran’s foreign ministry has said there will be “no step-by-step plan” to lift layers of American sanctions and restore the country’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

“The definitive policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran is the lifting of all US sanctions,” foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh told state-run PressTV on Saturday.

He said that includes all sanctions imposed and reimposed by former US President Donald Trump.

Trump in 2018 unilaterally abandoned the nuclear deal, also signed by China, Russia, Germany, France, and the United Kingdom, and imposed harsh economic sanctions that have only escalated since.

The Iranian foreign ministry spokesman’s comments come as US State Department deputy spokeswoman Jalina Porter said on Friday the focus of in-person talks in Vienna next week on reviving the nuclear deal would be on “the nuclear steps that Iran would need to take in order to return to compliance”.

Iran had previously said it was open to a step-by-step approach, but changed its position after US President Joe Biden refused to lift any sanctions for months, insisting Iran would need to act first to come back into full compliance with all its commitments under the deal.

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