Lavrov: Return to situation before JCPOA impossible

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said return to a situation, which was before the signing of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), is impossible, adding “There can be no talk on the renewal of the UN Security Council’s sanctions.”

Russia does not believe that the UN Security Council could renew sanctions against Tehran, which had been in place until the Iran nuclear deal was signed, Lavrov told the Moscow Nonproliferation Conference on Friday, TASS reported.

Russia’s top diplomat stressed that only the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), as the only UN body in charge of carrying out regular checks in Iran, can confirm that they meet all their commitments. Lavrov voiced hope that “together we will manage to preserve and fulfill the potential of the plan of action.”

Breaking up the Iran nuclear deal would jeopardize global security, including the situation on the Korean Peninsula, he said.

“Any attempts to start such talks [to break up the Iran nuclear deal] may bury this important agreement in the sphere of strategic stability and nuclear non-proliferation,” Lavrov said.

According to the top Russian official, any changes to the Iran deal would require the approval of all member states, including Iran. The agreement was reached between Tehran and the P5+1 group – five permanent members of the UN Security Council as well as Germany.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi told journalists in Moscow on Friday that Tehran would not withdraw from the nuclear deal before any other party, RT reported.

“We won’t be the first [to] withdraw from the deal… We will be committed to our obligations. We will not be the first to violate the agreement,” said Araqchi, adding that Iran would “react” to those who quit the agreement.

Iran does not believe that any additional inspections on Iranian nuclear sites are necessary, the minister said. There is no need to change or add any chapters into the JCPOA, he stated.

“The deal, as well as its protocols, was clear in terms of checks and monitoring [of Iran’s nuclear sites]; all measures were agreed upon,” he added.

Last week, Trump refused to certify Iran’s compliance with the terms of the nuclear accord under a domestic American law, kicking a decision to Congress over whether to restore sanctions against Iran.

He also threatened to “terminate” the JCPOA if he could not “reach a solution working with Congress and our allies” to change it.

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