China has moved to block the United States from triggering a mechanism that would reimpose United Nations Security Council sanctions on Tehran, a move that would effectively put an end to the Iran deal to curb the country’s nuclear power.
“The US demand has no legal ground and common sense. It is nothing but a political show staged by the US. It receives no support of the Security Council members and no acknowledgment of the international community,” the Chinese Mission to the UN said in a statement it posted on Twitter.
China was among at least six UNSC member states who objected to the move, after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited United Nations headquarters on Thursday to formally request that UNSC sanctions against Iran be reinstated.
Those sanctions had been rescinded in 2015 when the Iran deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, was signed between Tehran and the six world powers: the United States, China, Russia, France, the United Kingdom and Germany.
The US withdrew from the deal in 2018, arguing that it was flawed. The US and Israel have charged that in addition Iran is not in compliance with the deal.
On Thursday, Pompeo activated a clause in UNSC Resolution 2231 under which terms the Iran sanctions were revoked in 2015, which allowed a UNSC member to snapback those sanctions due to Iranian non-compliance.
Iran and UNSC member states such as China, who oppose the move, have said that the US has no legal standing to call for the snapback sanctions because it withdrew from the JCPOA in 2018. There must also be a good-faith effort to resolve issues around compliance, they said.
China’s UN Ambassador Zhang Jun asked Indonesia, which holds the rotating UNSC presidency for August, “not to identify and circulate the US communication as a notification” to trigger the snapback process, and to consult with all council members on how to proceed.
Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia rejected the US plan as “nonexistent.” Russia called for the council to meet on Iran on Friday but diplomats said that Washington blocked the request.
If there is enough opposition, the UNSC President could decide not to take any action. If no country puts forward a resolution to block the snapback of sanction, the dispute between the US and the UN could remain unresolved.
The US would declare that the sanctions had been reinstated, while the remaining 14 UNSC members could insist that they were still in place.
China’s UN mission pledged that its country would work to uphold the JCPOA and seek a diplomatic resolution to the Iran nuclear issue.
“We are firmly against US unilateral sanctions and long arms jurisdiction against other countries in the name of the Iranian nuclear issue,” it added.
Other countries who oppose the US moves are the E3 – Germany, France and the United Kingdom – as well as Belgium.
EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, who heads the committee charged with resolving JCPOA disputes, also spoke out against the sanction snapback and in support of the deal.
“As coordinator of the JCPOA Joint Commission I will continue to do everything possible to ensure the preservation and full implementation of the JCPOA by all. The JCPOA remains a key pillar of the global non-proliferation architecture, contributing to regional security,” Borrell said.
‘Three senior Iranian officials told Reuters this week Iran’s leadership is determined to remain committed to the nuclear deal, hoping that a victory by Trump rival Democrat Joe Biden in the November 3 US presidential election will salvage the pact.
Biden, who was Obama’s vice president, said he would rejoin the deal if Iran first resumed compliance.
“If Iran returns to strict compliance with the nuclear deal, the United States would rejoin the agreement and build on it, while working with allies to push back on Iran’s destabilizing actions,” Biden campaign spokesman Andrew Bates told Reuters.
Source » jp