Rouhani Mounts Staunch Defense of Nuclear Pact
President Hassan Rouhani highlighted the enormous economic and political gains made from the resolution of the lingering dispute over Iran's nuclear program.
The president was speaking in a press conference in Tehran on Tuesday to mark the one-year anniversary of the nuclear deal's implementation, President.ir reported.
The landmark accord, which placed time-bound constraints on Tehran's nuclear activities in return for sanctions relief, was concluded on July 14, 2015, and came into force on January 16, 2016.
Rouhani underlined the significance of the fact that the International Atomic Energy Agency, which monitors Iran's nuclear program and verifies its compliance with nuclear obligations under the pact, closed its consideration of the so-called possible military dimensions of Iran's nuclear work after failing to cite any diversion of nuclear material for non-civilian purposes.
"The closure of the dossier was a big moral victory for the Iranian nation," he said.
The president said Iran's serious engagement in diplomacy to resolve the nuclear standoff helped counter campaigns to promote Iranophobia and demonstrated to the world that Iran seeks peace and security in the region and the world.
"We wanted to tell the world that Iran deserves not to be called a threat to international peace and security under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter," he said.
The United Nations Security Council had adopted a raft of resolutions before the conclusion of the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, placing Iran under Chapter VII and imposing bans on Iran's nuclear and military activities.
The chapter allows UNSC to "determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of peace, or act of aggression" and to take military and nonmilitary action to "restore international peace and security."
Pointing to the economic dividends of JCPOA, the president said the settlement ended nuclear-related sanctions and dramatically increased oil revenues as the mainstay of public finances.
"Oil and gas sanctions as well as shipping and insurance bans have been lifted and our banking relations with other countries and major international financial institutions have been normalized," he said.
Rouhani stressed that the nuclear deal helped increase oil exports, providing a vital boost to public funds to balance budgets for various sectors from health and education to defense and security.