News ID: 205422
Published: 0410 GMT December 02, 2017

Officials at Rome MED summit reiterate support of Iran deal

Officials at Rome MED summit reiterate support of Iran deal

Officials attending an international summit in Italy’s Rome continue months of lobbying to keep the Iran nuclear deal, with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov expressing hope that there will be no breach of the deal by anyone.

"The deal is there, Iran is in compliance, it's part of international law, full stop," Lavrov said at the Rome MED – Mediterranean Dialogues 2017 summit.

President Donald Trump's threat to pull the US from the landmark nuclear deal reached with Iran in 2015 risks seriously undermining negotiations with countries like North Korea, Lavrov said.

"If the US drops out of the deal now, it won't be very credible in the eyes of those we want to drop nuclear programs, like North Korea," AFP quoted the Russian official as saying.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action was agreed two years ago between Iran and six powers, including the United States under Barack Obama.

But his successor in October refused to formally certify that the Islamic Republic was complying with the JCPOA, warning that he might ultimately “terminate” it.

IAEA reports have so far confirmed Iran’s full commitment to its side of the bargain.

"He [the North Korean leader] will say, 'even if they give me a deal, what happens when the next president comes to the White House'?" Lavrov said at the conference.

Trump has left the accord's fate up to Republican-controlled Congress, giving it 60 days – which run out in mid-December – to decide whether to reimpose sanctions on the Islamic Republic.

Trump has labeled the agreement too lenient on Iran and accuses the country of violating it, calling for a renegotiation.

"If it ain't broke don't fix it," Lavrov added.

The Russian is not the first to suggest Trump's wavering on the Iran deal could backfire.

Except for the US, all other parties to the JCPOA —France, Britain, Russia and China – plus Germany —have announced their support for the agreement and censured any move that could harm it.


“Key security priority”


European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini also described the deal as a “key security priority” for both Europe and the region.

“President Trump mentioned in a speech on ‘Iran strategy of the US’ that the United States will consult with allies on the way forward. The message we have sent as the European Union and its member states, all the 28 (members) are extremely united and clear, is this, ‘preserving the nuclear deal with Iran and its full implementation in all its parts by all is a key security priority for Europe,’” Mogherini said addressing the same session in Rome.

Mogherini said the deal was international law because it had been embedded in a United Nations Security Council resolution and suggested that any country not observing the deal would in effect be violating international law.

“You cannot dismantle the deal. You can decide not to implement a UN Security Council resolution, and this is sovereign choice, but the deal is part of the UN system and is an international agreement,” she said.

At least one member of the EU, France, which is also a party to the Iran deal, has on a limited number of occasions floated the idea of adding other topics to the deal, which would mean reopening negotiations, Press TV wrote.

Mogherini rejected any prospect of renegotiation.

“No possibility of renegotiating parts of it, even partially; it is a key priority for us to keep its full implementation,” she said.

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