Nuclear deal cannot be renegotiated or altered, Iran tells UN

October 17, 2017

Gholamali Khoshroo, Iran’s ambassador to the UN, has said that the 2015 nuclear deal is an international agreement and cannot be renegotiated or altered.

“As stressed in Iran’s recent statement, the JCPOA (the official name for the nuclear deal) is a valid international instrument. It cannot be renegotiated or altered. It is not a bilateral agreement that can be annulled by unilateral actions,” Khoshroo said during a speech at the First Committee of the UN General Assembly on nuclear weapons on Monday.

Following is full text of his speech published by IRNA:

We reiterate our deep concern over the alarming trends of new nuclear arms race and new nuclear arms modernization race. These trends become more worrisome when a certain nuclear-weapon State wants even more nuclear weapons to remain at the “top of the pack”. After over 70 years of inaction on nuclear disarmament, now it ironically states that progress is predicated on patience! These trends, with all their detrimental effects on international peace and security needs to come to an end.

While supporting the overall objective the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, we stress that it needs to be complemented by urgent conclusion of a comprehensive convention on nuclear weapons. Likewise, concrete practical measures on the total elimination of nuclear weapons need to be adopted in the 2020 NPT Review Conference.

Similarly, in the current international security situation, countering the danger of Israel regime's nuclear weapons is more urgent than ever. To that end, the 2020 NPT Review Conference have to take practical steps for the realization of the establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East.

A few days ago, the new policy of U.S. on the JCPOA was revealed. The claim of the U.S. administration regarding Iran’s non-compliance has no international relevance or credibility. 

U.S. unilateral claim to extend Iran's provisional restriction as permanent runs counter to not only the letter of the JCPOA but also to the inalienable rights of States under the NPT. 

U.S. unilaterally and wrongly claims that Iran is not respecting the spirit of the JCPOA, and to save the spirit, it threatens to dismantle the deal entirely. 

The U.S. fulfillment of its commitments has been lackluster and deficient from the very beginning. In several cases — especially during the current administration — it has violated both the content and the letter of the JCPOA. Iran has officially registered with the Joint Commission those violations. 

As stressed in Iran's recent statement, the JCPOA is a valid international instrument. It cannot be renegotiated or altered. It is not a bilateral agreement that can be annulled by unilateral actions. 

Iran will not be the first to withdraw from the JCPOA. However, if its rights and interests in the JCPOA are not respected, it will stop implementing all its commitments. 

IAEA is the sole authority to verify Iran's commitment under the JCPOA. According to the statement of the IAEA Director General, dated 13 October 2017, “the nuclear-related commitments undertaken by Iran under the JCPOA are being implemented. The IAEA’s verification and monitoring activities address all the nuclear-related elements under the JCPOA. Iran is now provisionally implementing the Additional Protocol to its Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement with the IAEA, a powerful verification tool which gives our inspectors broader access to information and locations in Iran. So far, the IAEA has had access to all locations it needed to visit.”

Once again I thank all distinguished delegates who called for the continued and full implementation the JCPOA. As rightly stated by distinguished High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, the Committee members should “add their voice in support of this historic agreement, as a demonstration of what can be achieved through direct engagement and a shared commitment to dialogue and cooperation in good faith”.

The international community should not allow the U.S. administration to continue to mock and undermine the JCPOA, that would, in turn, undermine the non-proliferation regime as a whole. Otherwise, after each and every election in any corner of the world, we should expect undoing all decisions and commitments of previous administrations. This may serve the tactical and short-sighted advantages, but will inflict the long term and strategic liability. It means, duration of agreements will shrink to the duration of administrations; sanctity of international instruments will have no place between States; and the “withdrawal doctrine” will be a dominant factor in international relations. Therefore, we have a collective responsibility in countering such an alarming trend.
 

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