Zarif: Iran-P4+1 to safeguard JCPOA

IRNA – Iran together with other parties to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) are resolved to safeguard the deal, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said.

‘Iran will continue to work with the remaining JCPOA participants and the rest of the international community to thwart this lawlessness and safeguard the JCPOA,’ Zarif made the remarks in a statement the High-Level Plenary Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly to Promote the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

The full text of Zarif’s statement is as follows:

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Madam President,

We are facing an alarming trend of new nuclear arms race, which started when President Trump made a statement asking for even more nuclear weapons to remain at the “top of the pack”.

The ongoing plans and activities of nuclear-weapon possessors for the modernization of their nuclear weapon arsenals and the U.S. development of mini-nukes, which, by reducing the threshold for their use, increases the possibility of their use, are indicative of another alarming trend signifying the start of a nuclear arms modernization race. These trends further threaten international peace and security and deepen the frustration of non-nuclear-weapon States.

Designation of the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons and the conclusion of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons represent a collective protest against the prolonged half-century old violation of the unconditional obligation of the nuclear-weapon States on nuclear disarmament under article VI of the NPT.

Article VI obligations are quite clear, and their implementation is neither optional nor conditional on such concepts as “strategic stability” or “international security environment”. Non-implementation of article VI continues to challenge the very foundation of the NPT, tarnish its credibility and undermine its effectiveness.

We should also make every effort to ensure the universal adherence to the NPT. The nuclear weapon program of the only non-party to the NPT in our region, namely Israel, which has recently threatened an NPT member-state with nuclear annihilation remains the most paramount threat to international peace and security and nuclear disarmament.

Madam President,

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) represents a successful model of dialogue and a historical achievement of diplomacy averting an unnecessary crisis. Twelve IAEA reports have verified Iran’s full compliance. The unlawful and unjustified withdrawal by the U.S. from the JCPOA, its blatant non-compliance with Security Council Resolution 2231 and its re-imposition of its illegal extraterritorial sanctions with an unprecedented vengeance has been categorically rejected by an overwhelming majority of the international community. Regrettably the U.S. openly and unlawfully bullies all UN Member States to either disobey resolution 2231 or face punishment.

Iran will continue to work with the remaining JCPOA participants and the rest of the international community to thwart this lawlessness and safeguard the JCPOA. We are confident that the U.S. will face further isolation, which is unfortunately well-deserved.

Let me conclude by stressing that working towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons is our collective legal obligation as well as our moral responsibility. To live in a world free of nuclear weapons is the right of generations to come. We will remain resolute to ensure it for our children.

I thank you, Madam President.