Speaking on Tuesday in a regular press briefing Geng Shuang the Chinese Foreign Minister described US President trademark policy of “maximum pressure” as a reason for Iran’s retaliatory decision to reduce its commitment under a 2015 multilateral nuclear deal, which Washington abandoned last year.
“We have emphasized on many previous occasions that the US’s maximum pressure is the root cause of the current fraught tensions,” Gang said “China regrets the measures taken by Iran,” but at the same time called on “all parties to view this from a long-term and overall perspective, exercise restraint, and uphold the JCPOA together so that there won’t be further escalation in the tense situation.” Gang added.
On Monday Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has announced that Tehran has exceeded the 300-kilogram limit on its low-enriched uranium production in response to Washington’s departure from the deal last May as well as the failure of the remaining signatories — France, Germany, the UK, Russia and China — to meet their obligations under the agreement.
Tehran initiated its countermeasures in May, the anniversary of Washington’s withdrawal from the 2015 accord. It said it was taking the retaliatory measures to prompt the deal’s European partners to stop throwing only verbal support behind the accord, and actually safeguard Iran’s business interests in the face of the sanctions that the US reinstated on Iran following its withdrawal — something that the JCPOA obliges them to do.
Iran says its reactions fit within its rights under paragraphs 26 and 36 of the nuclear deal, and that it will reverse the measures once its demands are met.
Meanwhile, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov urged Europe to honor its responsibilities to help save the deal.
“I would very much want our European colleagues to understand the full measure of their responsibility for preserving” the JCPOA,” Lavrov, adding that the European parties should “safeguard Iran’s economic interests” and help it sell its oil, a main target of US sanctions.