E3 Statement at the IAEA Board of Governors, March 2020, on the Verification of the JCPoA


E3 Statement at the IAEA Board of Governors, March 2020

Agenda Item 5: Verification of the JCPoA

Thank you Chair,

France, Germany, and the United Kingdom would like to thank the Director General for his latest report (GOV/2020/05) and the Deputy Director General for the Technical Briefing.

We commend the IAEA for implementing its mandate to verify and monitor the JCPoA with Iran with impartiality and professionalism. We greatly value the approach the IAEA has taken in conducting its work, and welcome the Agency’s prompt and objective reporting.

We are extremely concerned by Iran’s reductions in compliance with the JCPoA, which have grave and irreversible proliferation consequences. We noted with grave preoccupation Iran’s announcement of 5 January that it would no longer be bound by JCPoA limits on the number of operational centrifuges.

Iran continues to enrich uranium above the JCPoA-approved level of 3.67% and is stockpiling uranium beyond authorised JCPoA limits. Since the last Board meeting in November, Iran has significantly increased this stockpile, which now measures over one metric tonne of Uranium. Iran is also continuing research and development on numerous models of advanced centrifuges several times more powerful than Iran’s current IR-1 machines, which is inconsistent with its JCPoA commitments.

Iran enrichment activities at Fordow raise grave proliferation concerns, including because there is no plausible civilian justification for enriching uranium at this underground facility.

We call upon Iran to come back into compliance with all of its nuclear commitments under the JCPoA without delay.

In view of Iran’s measures contrary to the JCPoA, the E3 initiated the JCPoA’s Dispute Resolution Mechanism on 14 January. We did so in good faith and in hope of finding a diplomatic way forward, while preserving the agreement.  We have been clear that our overall goal is a negotiated solution to bring Iran back to compliance, and that this decision did not mean taking an automatic path to the UN Security Council. We encourage Iran to engage constructively in substantial discussions with other JCPoA participants in this regard.

On 26 February 2020 the JCPOA Joint Commission met and had a constructive exchange of views. We look forward to continuing these discussions on possible steps to find a solution to the current situation.

We remain fully committed to the JCPoA and to its full implementation.  We have been consistently clear in stating our regret and concern regarding the US withdrawal from the JCPoA. We have gone beyond our own JCPoA commitments. We have lifted sanctions as foreseen by the JCPoA and taken additional efforts to allow Iran to pursue legitimate trade, making good progress on technical talks with Iran to make INSTEX fully operational. We have contributed to progress on the Arak Modernisation Project and supported EU-led civil nuclear cooperation projects as part of the implementation of Annex 3.

In order to support the Agency, France provided, at the end of 2019, an extraordinary contribution of 500,000€ for verification activities in Iran, in particular to monitor the implementation of Iran’s nuclear commitments under the JCPoA. Germany provided 350,000€ to the IAEA for the monitoring and verification of Iran’s nuclear-related JCPoA commitments in 2019 and is planning to continue its support to the Agency in 2020.  In addition, the UK provided an extraordinary contribution of £400,000 in 2019, and plans to do the same in 2020. 

We once again thank the IAEA for its latest quarterly report on Iran and express our full confidence in its capacity to engage its mandate in a rigorous and impartial manner. We call on the Agency to continue to provide further detailed technical updates to the Board, as appropriate, and for the IAEA to make its latest quarterly report public.

Thank you.


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