The EU is deeply concerned by Iran’s unilateral resumption of activity at the Uranium Conversion Facility in Esfahan.

The IAEA Board of Governors has repeatedly asked Iran to suspend all enrichment related and reprocessing activities, including conversion, as an essential confidence building measure. Long term confidence-building is needed in view of Iran’s record of breaching safeguards obligations and failure to co-operate with the IAEA over a long period of time. The EU welcomes the resolution adopted by consensus at the IAEA Board on 11 August. The resolution is a clear and united signal from the international community that Iran returns to suspending all conversion activities without delay.

The full suspension is essential if a process of dialogue on long-term arrangements is to continue on the basis of the Paris Agreement. The EU fully supports this process. The EU calls on Iran to reconsider its decision to reject without discussion the proposals made by France, Germany and the UK, with the support of the EU High Representative. These offer the prospect of an improved relationship, on the basis of mutual co-operation, while providing objective guarantees to the international community that Iran would use its nuclear programme for exclusively peaceful purposes. They consequently make clear the European side’s readiness, in the context of an overall agreement, to support the development of a safe, economically viable and proliferation proof civilian nuclear programme in Iran.

Iran faces an important choice. The door remains open for Iran to continue negotiations within the framework established by the Paris Agreement by urgently halting all uranium conversion work and recommitting itself to full suspension. The EU’s strong hope is that Iran will take this course.

The Acceding Countries Bulgaria and Romania, the Candidate Countries Turkey and Croatia,1 the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, EFTA countries Iceland and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as the Republic of Moldova align themselves with this declaration.