Saturday, October 14, 2017

‘Iran deal not a bargaining chip’: Trump proved US can break agreements at any time, Moscow says

Russian Foreign Ministry
The Russian Foreign Ministry has condemned Donald Trump’s refusal to adhere to the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, saying that the move poses a threat to international security and nuclear non-proliferation, and exposes the US as an unreliable partner.

“Such policy aimed at the erosion of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and its credibility in fact deals a heavy blow to the global non-proliferation efforts,” Mikhail Ulyanov, the head of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Department on Non-proliferation and Arms Control, told Interfax following Trump’s announcement that he would not recertify the Iranian nuclear deal.

Such actions by Washington would only reinforce the belief of other countries, such as North Korea, that there is “no sense in negotiations” with the US as any international agreement, even those backed by the UN Security Council, can be “easily terminated,” he added.

The Russian diplomat denounced the US move as “irresponsible” and said Washington’s attempt to once again heighten the tensions around Iran’s nuclear program looks like “unmotivated aggression.”

“Under the current circumstances, Iran has much more reasons to advance claims against the US than the other way round,” he said, as reported by TASS.

Ulyanov was apparently referring to several rounds of sanctions that the US imposed on Tehran, even after the deal that actually envisaged easing anti-Iranian sanctions came into force.

Ulyanov also expressed his “deep regret” that the situation around the 2015 nuclear agreement had taken such a turn.

  • Sergey Ryabkov, the Russian deputy foreign minister, warned that the JCPOA should not become a bargaining chip in the US domestic political struggle.

“For many [in the US] and particularly in Congress, criticism of the JCPOA has become an instrument of handling the problems that are far from the [document’s] own purpose,” the deputy foreign minister said, adding that such an important international agreement “deserves an entirely different attitude” and “should not be treated as a bargaining chip.”

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