EU foreign policy chief reaffirms support to Iran n-deal

Brussels, Jan 16 (IANS) EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini on Monday reaffirmed the bloc’s commitment to the Iran nuclear deal, days after Donald Trump’s pick for Secretary of State claimed that he would recommend a “full review” of the landmark deal.

The Iran nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), came into its first anniversary of implementation on Monday.

Praising the deal as a key pillar of a strengthened international non-proliferation agenda, Mogherini said in a statement that “one year after the beginning of the implementation period, it is clear that the JCPOA is working for all.”

“The rigorous implementation of commitments by all sides is the best way to continue to build trust, to strengthen the JCPOA and to overcome the hurdles that are part of all comprehensive and far-reaching deals,” she added.

Rex Tillerson, US President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of state, said in his Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday that he would recommend a “full review” of the nuclear deal with Iran.

The remarks prompted an angry response from Tehran.

An Iranian diplomat on Friday said that his country would not allow any move to review the international nuclear deal, which has put an end to the disputes over Iran’s decade-long nuclear issue.

Donald Trump repeatedly criticized the Iran nuclear deal, calling it “the worst deal ever negotiated”.

He also suggested that he would force Iran to return to the negotiating table or risk the accord being dismantled.

Iran and six world powers, including Russia, China, US, Britain, France and Germany, reached an agreement on the Iranian nuclear issue in July 2015 that put Iran on the path of sanctions relief but more strict limits on its nuclear programme.

The deal set limits on Iran’s nuclear activities as it would take Tehran at least one year to produce enough fissile materials for producing a nuclear weapon, and it would also allow regular inspections of the facilities inside Iran.

In return, the US and the European Union suspend nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran, with the lifting of all past UN Security Council sanction resolutions.