Trump’s stance on JCPOA to harm US diplomacy: Catherine Ashton

Tasnim – Catherine Ashton, the former European Union foreign policy chief, said US President Donald Trump’s threats to pull out of the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers would harm US diplomacy and diplomacy in general.

“Despite the clear evidence of the IAEA inspectors that Iran is sticking to its side of the deal, he (Trump) is determined to change the agreement—threatening to pull out of it if he doesn’t get his way. This raises distinct problems for diplomacy in general and US diplomacy in particular,” Ashton wrote in an op-ed for Prospect magazine.

“All forms of collaboration have just become harder. Any nation or non-state actor will now think twice before doing a deal with the US. For example, Europe and the US have worked together closely and continue to do so on issues from Yemen to Libya. China’s role in bringing North Korea to a more constructive position is something the US has been pushing for. (During the Iran negotiations, North Korean diplomats made visits to Brussels to find out more about how it was being done. They weren’t the only ones.) A solution to Ukraine will rely on Russia being prepared to reach some form of agreement,” she wrote.

“These are all tricky issues, which will require some compromise if they are to be solved by diplomacy. All sides need to be sure that tomorrow’s benefits will outweigh today’s concessions. Without confidence in the long-term viability of a deal, diplomacy stands little chance.”

In a major confrontational stance against Iran on October 13, US President Donald Trump refused to certify the multilateral deal on Tehran’s peaceful nuclear program.

Speaking from the White House, Trump said he will choose not to certify that Tehran is complying with the agreement.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the 159-page nuclear agreement between Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany), was reached in July 2015 and came into force in January 2016.

Since the historic deal was signed in Vienna, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has repeatedly confirmed the Islamic Republic’s compliance with its commitments under the JCPOA, but some other parties, especially the US, have failed to live up to their undertakings.

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