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European powers trigger Iran deal dispute mechanism

The step by the United Kingdom, France and Germany is intended to buy time to resolve the impasse over Iran reducing its adherence to the nuclear deal to protest a lack of sanctions relief, but analysts fear it could hasten the accord’s demise.
Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian take part in meeting with Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Brussels, Belgium, May 15, 2018.  REUTERS/Yves Herman/Pool - RC1DC146CCD0

The United Kingdom, France and Germany announced today that they are triggering a dispute resolution mechanism (DRM) in the 2015 Iran nuclear deal in response to steps by Iran to reduce its compliance with the accord. Iran's move comes in protest of the US re-imposition of crippling economic sanctions.

Though the three European parties to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) said they are triggering the DRM in sincere hope of finding a way to preserve the agreement and stressed that they are not joining the Donald Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran, analysts warned the step could ultimately hasten the deal’s demise. They said it risks Iran’s eventual decision to curtail extensive monitoring and verification of its nuclear program by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and adherence to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

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