An Iranian deputy foreign minister says there is no link between the country’s 2015 nuclear agreement with world countries and the role it plays in the region.
In remarks to Reuters on Thursday on the sidelines of a Euromoney conference in Paris, Abbas Araqchi highlighted Iran’s efforts to restore calm to the terror-hit region, but said this has nothing to do with the nuclear deal it signed with the six powers.
“We have always fought against terrorism. Iran has always played a key role in bringing stability and peace to the region…There is no link between the (nuclear) deal and our role in the region,” said Araqchi, who served as a senior negotiator in the talks in the run-up to the deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
Araqchi further slammed the “policies of Israel, Saudi Arabia and the United States,” which he said “have led to crises and wars in the Middle East.”
The JCPOA was clinched between Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany in Vienna. It lifted nuclear-related sanctions against the Islamic Republic, and, in turn, placed certain restrictions on its nuclear energy program.
However, the United States under President Donald Trump has been trying to either destroy or undermine the agreement in Washington’s favor by calling it “the worst deal ever negotiated.”
The other parties to the deal as well as the UN and the European Union, however, call it a diplomatic victory and a major plank of regional and international peace. They warn Washington that it cannot unilaterally pull out as the deal is a multi-national one.
While pushing hard to vilify the agreement, Washington has also been trying to portray Iran’s missile program and its regional role in a bad light. It has been trying to force Europe to join negotiations aimed at revising the accord to cover Tehran’s missile work and regional role.
Speaking at the Paris event, Araqchi also said the Trump administration’s Iran policy is “destructive” and violates the terms of the JCPOA.