Nuclear deal remains ‘triumph of multilateral diplomacy’ despite U.S. exit: Zarif

July 16, 2018 - 9:59

TEHRAN- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Saturday that that the historic nuclear agreement that Tehran signed with the 5+1 group on July 2015 is still a "triumph of multilateral diplomacy" despite the U.S. exit from the accord.

Zarif made the remarks in a post on his official Twitter account on the occasion of the third anniversary of the conclusion of the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

“On 3rd anniversary of JCPOA, it remains a triumph of multilateral diplomacy despite US actions,” Zarif tweeted. 

President Donald Trump announced on May 8 that Washington was walking away from the nuclear agreement and that he planned to impose "the highest level" of economic bans on the Islamic Republic.

Under the JCPOA, Iran undertook to put limits on its nuclear program in exchange for the termination of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.

Since the U.S. president pulled Washington out of the nuclear deal, European countries have been scrambling to ensure that Iran gets enough economic benefits to persuade it to stay in the deal. The remaining parties have vowed to stay in the accord.

Zarif, one of the architects of the nuclear pact, criticized unilateral actions by Trump's administration.

"While we knew U.S. can't be trusted to keep its word—as its allies have now discovered—JCPOA proves that toxic unilateralism of Trump Admin means it can’t be relied on to honor any deal," the top Iranian diplomat pointed out.

Talking to reporters in Vienna on July 6 following a meeting with the EU foreign policy chief and his counterparts from Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia for the first time since the U.S. withdrawal, the Iranian foreign minister said that all the remaining signatories to the 2015 nuclear agreement had political will to stand up to the U.S. move.

However, he warned that if the European sides failed to properly fulfill their commitments, Iran would take its own measures to counter the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA.

In a post on his Twitter account after the Vienna meeting, Zarif summarized the core of the talks as follows: 

1. All committed to ensure Iran's benefits: US isolated; 2. Moving in right direction on concrete steps for timely implementation of commitments; 3. Iran reasserted its rights to respond to US violations if remedial measures prove insufficient. 

Tehran has conditioned its stay in the deal to practical European strides to make sure Iran’s dividends from the deal would not be affected when U.S. sanctions "snap back" in August.

According to Press TV, the first group of sanctions on Iran’s automotive sector, gold trade, and other industries will “snap back” on August 4. Further sanctions on oil and transactions with Iran’s central bank will come into effect November 6.

Since the implementation of the nuclear agreement, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has confirmed Iran’s full compliance with its obligations under the JCPOA in several reports.

"As stated in my latest report to the Board [of Governors], the agency has conducted complementary accesses under the Additional Protocol to all the sites and locations in Iran which we needed to visit," Amano said in his introductory statement to the Board of Governors on June 4.


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