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Iranian nuclear deal is not a bilateral agreement between U.S. and Iran

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said on Wednesday that the JCPOA, the official name for the nuclear deal between Iran and great powers, is a "multilateral agreement" and that she is tasked to guarantee its full implementation.

November 13


London , United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland - 13 Nov 2016 - Foreign Ministry

Responding to US president-elect Donald Trump’s negative remarks about Iran’s nuclear deal, Federica Mogherini, the EU high representative for foreign affairs and security policy, said the US can’t cancel the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Republican Donald Trump, who unexpectedly won the U.S. presidency on Tuesday, had argued during his campaigns that he would renegotiate the nuclear deal if he was elected president. He is likely to wake up to the reality that is it easier said then done.

Asked Thursday about President-elect Donald Trump's threats to tear up the Iran nuclear deal once in office, the European Union official tasked to oversee its implementation said it was not a bilateral agreement but a multilateral one, enshrined in a U.N. Security Council resolution.

"The Iranian deal, the nuclear deal, is not a bilateral agreement between the U.S. and Iran," she said in an interview with CNN.

"It's a multilateral agreement that we have negotiated. I have a personal, direct responsibility as, still, the chair of the joint commission that supervises the implementation of the agreement, to guarantee that it is fully implemented by all sides - all sides - and this is enframed into a UN Security Council resolution, actually more than one," she added.

She said, "So it is not a bilateral or unilateral issue. It is a multilateral agreement in the framework of the UN."

Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany), reached the comprehensive nuclear deal in July 2015 and it was implemented in January 2016.

During his presidential campaigns, Trump said the JCPOA was a “terrible” and “disastrous” deal.

E.U. foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini’s words reinforced those of Iranian President Hasan Rouhani, who said on Iranian television Wednesday that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was “not concluded with one country or government but was approved by a resolution of the U.N. Security Council, and there is no possibility that it can be changed by a single government.”

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Thursday that Iran wants all parties to stick to the international nuclear deal but has options if that does not happen.

"Of course Iran's options are not limited but our hope and our desire and our preference is for the full implementation of the nuclear agreement, which is not bilateral for one side to be able to scrap," Zarif asserted Zarif in a news conference in Bratislava after meeting his Slovak counterpart Miroslav Lajcak.

Also on Wednesday Zarif said Trump must stick to international agreements including the nuclear deal which was reached in July 2015 and took effect in January 2016.

President Hassan Rouhani also said on Wednesday that the election of Trump will have no effect on Iran's behavior.

The nuclear agreement that was signed between Iran, and six great powers - China, Russia, the U.S, Britain, France, and Germany - in July 2015 went into effect in January.

Throughout the campaign that ended with Tuesday night’s victory, Trump criticized the agreement painstakingly negotiated between Iran and the P5+1 group – the U.S., Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany – and touted by the Obama administration as a major foreign policy achievement. Trump called it the worst deal he had seen and said dismantling it would be a “number on priority.” On other occasions he suggested he would renegotiate it, or “police” it so determinedly that the Iranians would not “have a chance.”

One of Trump’s foreign policy advisors, Walid Phares, told British public radio Thursday that Trump would review the JCPOA and demand changes from the Iranians. The administration maintains that the agreement cuts off all routes to a nuclear weapons capability, by placing wide-ranging restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities, with strict monitoring and the ability to “snap back” sanctions in case of violations. Critics, including some leading some non-proliferation experts, say it leaves an unacceptably large proportion of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure intact, laying the groundwork for Iran to become a nuclear threshold state once sunset provisions expire, after 10-15 years. Moreover, they charge that the deal has both emboldened and enriched Iran.

According to the JCPOA, Iran is tasked to limit its nuclear activities and instead sanctions against the country are removed

The second round of Iran-EU talks was held in the Belgium capital co-chaired by Deputy Foreign Minister Majid Takht-e Ravanchi and Secretary General of the European External Action Service Helga Schmid.

In this round of talks, the two delegations discussed a wide range of issues, including economic, trade, banking and energy issues as well as the environment, refugees and immigrants, drug control and natural disasters.


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