May 30, 2019, 9:59 AM
News Code: 83332947
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Measuring performance of JCPOA’s members

Tehran, May 30, IRNA - US withdrawal from Iran’s nuclear deal, also known as Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), is a test to measure the commitment of remaining members vis-à-vis the JCPOA; a test that Russia and China have so far been better than the European Troika.

In the post-JCPOA space, the question has always been raised whether Iran has replaced the view of the West with the East, or are its eastern counterparts still more reliable than the Western ones?


Officials in our country usually have a balanced look at this and evaluate national interests in their attitude and approach as a decisive element. As a result, they are trying to find new allies in the West, especially in Europe, while maintaining relations with their long-time allies and partners in the East, a point that was effective in the formation of the JCPOA.


In post-JCPOA space, especially after May 2018, when US President Donald Trump left the nuclear deal, a difficult mission has been left to the remaining members. Not only did they have to fulfill their commitment, but had to dismantle the United States' maximum pressure on Iran as party to agreement.


Now that about a year has passed since the United States exited the nuclear deal, Iranian officials are more satisfied with China and Russia than the European side. In this regard, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif recently stated, "In international relations, it is unreasonable to consider any country as an absolute friend, but the behavior of China and Russia after the departure of the United States is not comparable with the behavior of Europe.”


Contrary to Europe, which has only showed political support, Beijing and Moscow have been trying to keep pace with their commitments. From the end of January 2015, when the nuclear deal entered the executive phase, nuclear exchanges and the exchange of uranium-enriched uranium with a yellow cake immediately happened between Tehran and Moscow. During this time, apart from the close cooperation between the two countries and the expansion of bilateral relations, they also had a similar view on regional issues.


Tehran and Beijing's cooperation is also significant in the post-JCPOA space with Tehran. China is one of the major buyers of Iranian oil that so far, it has made much effort to neutralize US sanctions, especially since Trump refuses to extend the exemption for oil.


In the trip that Zarif had to for four Asian countries during the mid-days of April, including Turkmenistan, India, Japan and China, in addition to bilateral economic relations, a significant part of the talks with the authorities of these countries was dedicated to American obstructions against JCPOA which China's foreign minister Wang Yi's decisive position is striking.


China's Foreign Minister, in a meeting with his Iranian counterpart, stating that "China is definitely opposed to US unilateral sanctions," insisted Beijing is defending Tehran to protect its legitimate rights. Zarif, on the other hand, also urged international cooperation and mulling to deal with the unilateral policies of Trump, saying, "Iran and China must cooperate and work together to prevent the multilateral order of the world and preserve the multilateral order of the world.”


European Union leaders are worried about Tehran's countermeasures. Although they have not accepted the deadline set by Tehran at the policy level, they are expected to put some of their commitments into operation.


From the viewpoint of observers, the renewed emphasis by the foreign policy chief of the Union on the implementation of the INSTEX in the coming weeks, as well as the European concern over the intensification of tensions between Iran and the United States, has opened the window of hope for saving the JCPOA; a European agreement they look at from the political and security angles beyond the economic significance.


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