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Participants begin to implement Iran nuclear agreement

"Adoption Day" marks when participants of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action begin arrangements to make the pact a reality.

By
Fred Lambert
U.S. President Barack Obama on Oct. 18, 2015 signed the Iran nuclear deal and announced parties to the agreement would begin steps toward making it a reality. Pool Photo by Ron Sachs/UPI
U.S. President Barack Obama on Oct. 18, 2015 signed the Iran nuclear deal and announced parties to the agreement would begin steps toward making it a reality. Pool Photo by Ron Sachs/UPI | License Photo

TEHRAN, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Leaders in the United States, the European Union and Iran on Sunday began making arrangements to put the tenets of the Iran nuclear deal into motion.

"Adoption Day," marks when participants of the deal, known officially as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, will begin implementation of the July 14 agreement.

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U.S. President Barack Obama signed the deal Sunday, and the White House released a statement heralding the milestone.

"Today, Iran begins to take the steps necessary to implement its JCPOA commitments, including removing thousands of centrifuges and associated infrastructure, reducing its enriched uranium stockpile from approximately 12,000 kilograms to 300 kilograms, and removing the core of the Arak heavy-water reactor and filling it with concrete so that it cannot be used again, among other steps," the statement read.

Obama said he "directed that the heads of all relevant executive departments and agencies of the United States begin preparations to implement the U.S. commitments" of the deal, including "nuclear-related" sanctions relief once the International Atomic Agency verifies Iran's compliance to all necessary steps.

Iran has said this could take up to two months, but senior administration officials on Saturday dismissed that projection as too short and noted they were more concerned with the measures being implemented correctly.

Ali Akbar Velayati, a top adviser to supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, told state media that "On implementation, all should be watchful that Westerners, particularly Americans ... keep their promises," while Ali Akbar Salehi, Iran's atomic energy chief, said his staff awaited an order from President Hassan Rouhani to begin compliance measures, which he hoped would "begin in the current or next week."

The next milestone of the JCPOA is "Implementation Day," which will mark the beginning of actual sanctions relief should Iran show evidence it has taken all necessary steps outlined in the agreement.

"Implementation Day will not happen until Iran complies with all steps under JCPOA," CNN quoted U.S. officials as saying late Saturday.

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