Rouhani faces trial over IAEA deal
2015 nuclear deal completely suspended today
TEHRAN, Feb 22: Hardline Iranian lawmakers say an agreement reached recently between the government and the United Nations' nuclear watchdog is "illegal" and the president must be punished for it.
In a public vote on Monday, an overwhelming majority of lawmakers voted to send a report by the National Security and Foreign Policy Commission on the agreement reached with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to the judiciary for review.
The parliament's motion also directly called for Rouhani to be legally punished. "The aforementioned law recognises mister president as the person in charge of implementing it," the motion said, calling on Rouhani and all others who the parliament believes violated the law to be handed over to the judiciary.
"The president on the way to the court!" Tehran representative Mojtaba Rezakhah wrote on Twitter shortly after the motion was passed. Another lawmaker, Nazammudin Mousavi, said on Twitter than the parliament had sent a "decisive message" with the motion: that no one will be allowed to "circumvent the law".
The report asserts that the deal struck on Sunday between the IAEA and the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran (AEOI) constitutes a "clear violation" of a law passed by Parliament in December. As per the law, the government of President Hassan Rouhani must stop the voluntary implementation of the Additional Protocol, which gives broad authorities to IAEA inspectors, from Tuesday.
In a statement, the AEOI said the implementation of the Additional Protocol will be completely halted from Tuesday, in accordance with the law, and no access will be given to the UN's nuclear watchdog beyond those laid out in a principal safeguards agreement aimed at ensuring nuclear non-proliferation.
The arrangement will remain in place for three months, at the end of which the data will be destroyed if all United States sanctions, imposed on Iran since 2018 after former President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from Iran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, are not lifted. Iran's Supreme National Security Council also said in a statement on Monday the IAEA agreement falls in compliance with the parliament's law.
The head of the United Nations' nuclear watchdog The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said it reached an agreement with Iran to continue its "necessary" verification and monitoring activities for up to three months, but there will be less access and no more snap inspections starting on Tuesday. -AL JAZEERA