EU Approach on JCPOA Not Tied to US

EU Approach on JCPOA Not Tied to USEU Approach on JCPOA Not Tied to US

A lawmaker said the next president of the United States could back away from the nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, but his European allies will not follow the US, if it makes such a decision.

Avaz Heydarpour, a member of Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, made the statement in an interview with ICANA on Sunday.

"In the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [the formal title of the nuclear accord], there is a mechanism for getting out of the accord. But Americans should know that in this case, they will not be followed by the Europeans," he said.

Heydarpour was responding to US Republican presidential contenders who have promised to scrap the deal with Iran if they win the 2016 election.

The accord was concluded last July, after two years of relentless negotiations between Iran and P5+1 (the US, Britain, France, China and Russia, plus Germany), and implemented on January 16 to remove international sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbs on its nuclear program.

"The Europeans have decided not to follow in US footsteps," he added.

On the future of the pact without the US, the lawmaker explained that Iran reached the agreement with a group of six countries, not just the US, noting that the deal could remain in place even if the US opts out.

"In the middle of the path, if the US decides to pull out, Iran will maintain the deal with other participants," he said.

According to the JCPOA, if Iran or any member of P5+1 believed that the other side is not meeting commitments under the deal, it will be able to lodge a complaint, and if it was not satisfied with the response to the complaint, it could cease meeting its commitments.

On Friday, US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, who was a senior member of the US negotiating team in the nuclear talks with Iran, said that tearing the nuclear deal is not sensible.

"It's technically possible, but I just don't see that any calculation leads you to that as being a sensible approach," Moniz said in an interview with Bloomberg Television.

Moniz explained it is "extremely unlikely" that the other world powers that negotiated with Iran would follow the US lead if the next president just arbitrarily says, "Well, everything's going fine, but I just don't like this deal. Let's start over again."