Amos Yadlin, the former chief of the IDF Military Intelligence Directorate, expresses concern about a clause in the 25-year strategic cooperation mega-deal signed by Iran and China that includes a commitment to military cooperation, with joint training, research and intelligence sharing.
The current head of the Institute for National Security Studies tells the Ynet news site that “on this issue, China is putting itself in a place that until today it had not been in before.”
“On a fundamental level, China opposes an Iranian nuclear bomb, but on the other hand, it is not helping stop Iran. Iran needs China’s political support to stop the United States from pressuring it,” says Yadlin.
“The Chinese understand that the Biden administration is not the Trump administration, and they can be much more aggressive.”
China is Iran’s leading trade partner and was one of the biggest buyers of Iranian oil before then-US president Donald Trump reimposed sweeping unilateral sanctions in 2018 after abandoning a multilateral nuclear agreement with Tehran.
Yadlin’s comments come after China and Iran signed the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership on Saturday, a 25-year-long strategic agreement between the two countries to address economic issues in Iran amid crippling US sanctions.
The New York Times reported that China will invest some $400 billion in Iran in exchange for oil as part of the deal. The deal could undermine US leverage over Iran ahead of expected negotiations and lessen American influence in the Middle East.