P5+1 powers agree on Iran sanctions snapback

01 June 2015

Report claims countries have agreed on mechanism to punish potential nuclear violations

  • Suspected breaches would be taken up by dispute resolution panel
  • Iran still to agree on sanctions relief process
  • World powers and Iran eyeing 30 June agreement

Six world powers negotiating with Iran over the future of its nuclear programme have agreed on a method of restoring sanctions if Iran breaks the proposed agreement.

The US, China, France, Germany, Russia and the UK has a new understanding on a UN sanctions “snapback”, which could punish Iran if it does not meet its commitments, Reuters reports citing Western officials.

The so-called P5+1 powers and Iran signed an interim agreement on 2 April to set the guidelines for a comprehensive deal targeted for 30 June.

The limits on Iran’s uranium enrichment programme have been put forward to prevent Iran from attempting to building nuclear weapons, with Iran gaining relief from economic sanctions in exchange.

Washington and the European powers had disagreed with China and Russia over whether sanctions relief would be automatically reversible if Tehran violates the agreement, with the former proposing an automatic snapback of UN sanctions.

As part of a new agreement, the report claims, suspected breaches by Iran would be taken up by a dispute resolution panel that would assess the allegations and come up with a non-binding opinion. If Iran was found to be in non-compliance, the sanctions could be restored.

However, Iran has yet to agree to the sanctions snapback, and it could be a point of contention when the powers meet for official talks at the end of June.

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