Russia’s foreign minister said Monday that he had agreed with his Chinese counterpart that the two countries would “obstruct” any attempt by US President Donald Trump to “sabotage” the nuclear deal with Iran.
“We are against revising these agreements. We consider it very counterproductive to try to reduce to zero years of international work carried out via talks between the six major powers and Iran,” Sergey Lavrov said after discussions with China’s Wang Yi, the Tass news agency reported.
“We will obstruct attempts to sabotage these agreements which were enshrined in a UN Security Council resolution.”
Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif also weighed in, tweeting on Monday that French President Emmanuel Macron was correct to tell Fox News on Sunday that he had no “Plan B” if the Trump administration decided to withdraw from the accord.
“It’s either all or nothing,” Zarif posted. “European leaders should encourage President Trump not just to stay in the nuclear deal, but more importantly to begin implementing his part of the bargain in good faith.”
President Macron is correct in saying there's no "Plan B" on JCPOA. It's either all or nothing. European leaders should encourage President Trump not just to stay in the nuclear deal, but more importantly to begin implementing his part of the bargain in good faith.
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) April 23, 2018
Macron on Monday starts a three-day state visit to the US.
US President Donald Trump is threatening to tear up the 2015 agreement aimed at curbing Tehran’s nuclear efforts unless European capitals agree to supplement it with tougher controls on Iran’s missile program and future ability to return to nuclear fuel enrichment.
Iran is upping the rhetoric in return, with Zarif warning Saturday that Tehran was ready to “vigorously” resume enrichment if the United States ditches the nuclear accord.
Macron said he too supports efforts to curb Iran’s ballistic missile program, but that this does not require scrapping the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear accord.
“I’m not satisfied with the situation with Iran. I want to fight against ballistic missiles, I want to contain their influence in the region,” he said.
“My point is to say don’t leave now the JCPOA as long as you have not a better option for nuclear, and let’s complete it with ballistic missile and regional containment.”
Macron also cited the shared goal of reining in Iran’s influence as he argued for a long-term US commitment in Syria — where Paris and Washington have cooperated in the fight against the Islamic State group and coordinated strikes on Syrian regime chemical weapons installations.
Trump has called the deal the worst in history and has until May 12 to decide whether to reimpose sanctions.