Iran says has no obligation under JCPOA to ship out excess heavy water

Press TV – Iran says its 2015 nuclear agreement with the P5+1 group of countries does not oblige it to ship out its excess heavy water.

“Nothing in the [nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)] requires Iran to ship out the excess heavy water which is made available to the international market but has not yet found an actual buyer to which the heavy water needs to be delivered,” Iran said in a letter to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The letter was circulated to the agency’s member states on Thursday and posted on its website, Reuters reported.

The IAEA is monitoring the implementation of the JCPOA, which was signed between Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China – plus Germany on July 14, 2015. The implementation of the deal started on January 16, 2016.

Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limitations on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.

As part of the JCPOA, Iran is expected to keep its heavy water stockpile below 130 metric tonnes.

The deal says all excess heavy water “will be made available for export to the international market based on international prices and delivered to the international buyer.”

The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) said in February that Tehran was weighing requests from some European states to purchase heavy water from the Islamic Republic.

“Following the sale of 70 tonnes of heavy water to Russia and the US, some European countries have asked for [the purchase of Iran’s] heavy water and we are considering their requests,” Ali Asghar Zare’an, special assistant to the AEOI head, Ali Akbar Salehi, said on February 18.

The AEOI chief said in October last year that Iran had sold 32 tonnes of heavy water to the United States and delivered 38 tonnes of the nuclear substance to Russia.

Salehi also said in November 2016 that the country has transferred 11 tonnes of heavy water to Oman as part of its obligations under the JCPOA.

Since the implementation of the nuclear agreement, the IAEA has repeatedly confirmed Iran’s compliance with its obligations under the nuclear agreement in several reports.