Trump under Fire for Attempts to Nullify JCPOA at Iran's Expense

Trump under Fire for Attempts to Nullify JCPOA at Iran's Expense
ID : N-65 Date : 2017/08/12 - 12:31

(Persia Digest) - Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has strongly criticized the US President Donald Trump for trying to do away at the expense of the Islamic Republic with the nuclear deal Iran signed with the P5+1 group of countries in 2015.

Zarif said on his official Twitter account on Friday that the US president has always sought to “kill” the nuclear agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA),.

POTUS always wanted to kill JCPOA. To avoid isolation, he's trying to blame it on Iran. Bad faith on top of US violating the letter & spirit

— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) August 11, 2017

“To avoid isolation, he’s trying to blame it on Iran,” he added.

“Bad faith on top of US violating the letter and spirit [of the JCPOA],” the top Iranian diplomat said.

Ever since he occupied the White House in January Trump has been accusing Iran of “not upholding its obligations” under the landmark nuclear deal struck by former president Barack Obama.

“I don’t think they’re living up to the spirit of the agreement,” he told reporters.

 “They are not in compliance with the agreement and they certainly are not in the spirit of the agreement in compliance, and I think you’ll see some very strong things taking place if they don’t get themselves in compliance,” he went on to say.

Trump has been signaling for weeks that he would like to declare Tehran noncompliant with the terms of the accord. In July, he instructed Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to verify to Congress that Iran was abiding by the pact.

But two weeks ago, he told The Wall Street Journal he did not suspect he would do the same three months from now. Under the agreement, the White House must certify to Congress every three months whether Iran is honoring the deal, which rolled back sanctions in exchange for curbing Iran’s nuclear program.

However, the US Senate and Treasury Department have imposed new sanctions against the Islamic Republic and several Iranian companies and individuals in recent months over its national missile program, which is not in breach of the JCPOA.

Serious Cost

Another senior Iranian official has warned against serious ramifications of breaching the nuclear deal, expressing Tehran’s preparedness to respond to any such scenario.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi said if any party to the deal violates its terms, they will have to pay a “serious cost.”

Araqchi denounced the new US sanctions against Iran over its missile program as “unacceptable” and argued that Tehran’s missile program, which relies on Iranian people’s capabilities, is solely defensive and deterrent.

In related news, Zarif told Federica Mogherini, the chair of the JCPOA Joint Commission and the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy that Trump plans to withdraw from the nuclear deal on Iran’s account.

Mogherini was in Tehran to participate in the inauguration ceremony for President Hassan Rouhani on Aug. 5.

Zarif said that US wants to prevent Iran from benefits offered by JCPOA and it is a violation of the nuclear deal. Mogherini said in response that the EU endorses JCPOA strongly and is encourages Trump to support this issue as well.

Trump’s Skepticism ‘A Pity’

In another development, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the Trump administration’s skepticism about the “successful” nuclear deal was a pity. Lavrov expressed regret that “our American partners” call the JCPOA into question.

“In the Trump administration they continue calling these agreements wrong and erroneous, and it's a pity that such a successful treaty is now somewhat being cast into doubt,” the Russian foreign minister was quoted as saying August 11.

Lavrov’s remarks come as the Iranian Parliament is set to vote on a motion which incorporates a host of retaliatory measures in the face of US “acts of terror” and “adventurism” in the region.

The bill allocates some $609 million to several state bodies, including the Foreign Ministry, Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs, the Judiciary, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and its Quds Force, to monitor and probe US actions in the region.

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