Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says he hopes the next U.S. administration accepts last year's nuclear deal ''once the dust has settled''. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION STORY: Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Friday (November 11) he hoped the next U.S. administration would accept last year's nuclear deal and asked all the parties to stay committed "We believe that JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) ) is a reasonable agreement, good for everyone. That is our preference, but that doesn't mean that we don't have other options," he said during his visit to Prague. US elect president Donald Trump has expressed opposition to the nuclear pact during his campaign, and as the deal, harshly opposed by US Republicans in Congress, was reached as a political commitment rather than a treaty ratified by lawmakers, is vulnerable to a new U.S. president. In March he declared that his "Number-One priority" would be to "dismantle the disastrous deal with Iran" and said he would have negotiated a better deal, with longer restrictions. Zarif said he hoped all the parts would stay committed despite the outcome of the US presidential election. "I think once the dust is settled and people are briefed about the realities of the region and the world, everybody will come to accept the fact that this is a multilateral undertaking of the United States as well as all the -what?- six plus the European Union, so quite a lot of people, lot of countries who have been engaged in this. So I think it will be in the interest of everybody to remain committed in practice," Zarif stated. Iran denies ever having considered developing atomic weapons. But experts said any U.S. violation of the deal would allow Iran also to pull back from its commitments to curb nuclear development. Those commitments include reducing the number of its centrifuges by two-thirds, capping its level of uranium enrichment well below the level needed for bomb-grade material, reducing its enriched uranium stockpile from around 10,000 kg to 300 kg for 15 years, and submitting to international inspections to verify its compliance.