News ID: 279721
Published: 0231 GMT January 21, 2021

Iran’s FM: Unlawful US sanctions dealt blow to multilateralism

Iran’s FM: Unlawful US sanctions dealt blow to multilateralism

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has once again slammed the US for turning its back on its obligations under the 2015 nuclear agreement, saying Washington has profoundly undermined multilateralism by imposing unlawful sanctions on others.

Speaking in a videoconference call with his Irish counterpart, Simon Coveney, on Wednesday, Zarif said Washington’s unilateral sanctions, especially those imposed on other countries over the past few years, run counter to the UN Charter and international accords, and have dealt a blow to multilateralism, Press TV reported.

He further expressed Iran’s readiness to fully implement the nuclear deal — officially named the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) — if the United States lifts its sanctions against the Islamic Republic and returns to compliance with the multilateral agreement.

Iran had met all its obligations since the JCPOA took effect, Zarif said, adding that the country only started reducing its commitments under Article 36 of the accord since it was deprived of the pact’s benefits following the unilateral US withdrawal and Europe’s inability to live up to its obligations.

The JCPOA was signed in 2015 between Iran and six world states — namely the US, Germany, France, Britain, Russia and China — and ratified in the form of UN Security Council Resolution 2231.

However, the US under former president Donald Trump unilaterally pulled out of the JCPOA in May 2018 and reinstated the anti-Iran sanctions that had been lifted by the deal.

The Trump administration also targeted Iran with the so-called maximum pressure campaign, subjecting the nation to the “toughest ever” restrictive measures.

The fate of the JCPOA is now hanging in the balance after the European co-signatories — France, Britain and Germany — failed to counter the anti-Iran sanctions as required by the agreement, prompting Tehran to scale back parts of its commitments in retaliation.

Trump’ successor, Joe Biden, has pledged to rejoin the accord if Iran returns to compliance.

Tehran has repeatedly called on Washington to lift sanctions first and respect its own obligations under the agreement.

Iran has to effectively feel the results of any potential sanctions relief by the United States instead of only being served with a toothless signature in case Washington returned to its obligations under the 2015 nuclear agreement, Zarif said on January 14 referring to preconditions of US return to the JCPOA.

“Although, signing [it] is the necessary condition, the sufficient condition here is witnessing the effects of the US actions,” Zarif stressed.

President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday commented on the end of Trump term in office, stressing, “The ball is in America’s court” now to return to a landmark nuclear deal and lift sanctions on Iran.

The top Irish diplomat, for his part, told Zarif during the videoconferene that his country considers the JCPOA an important achievement of multilateral diplomacy and intends to play an active role in preserving the accord, given its non-permanent membership of the Security Council and election as the Resolution 2231 facilitator.



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