No Tolerance for Nuclear Pact Infringements

If a country neglects to perform its duties under the nuclear deal, it must incur a heavy penalty, whether it is the US or any other party
Bahram QasemiBahram Qasemi

The Foreign Ministry spokesman said Tehran will not put up with infringements of the 2015 nuclear deal and it would act to duly punish violators of the multi-party pact.

"Iran will not be the first to violate the JCPOA, [but] it will give an appropriate response to violations of the deal by any other country,"

Bahram Qasemi said in a regular presser on Monday, using an abbreviation for the formal name of the deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, ISNA reported.

The deal involves Iran and P5+1, which comprises the US, the UK, France, Russia and China, plus Germany. All signatories are pleased with the two-year pact, except the controversial US President Donald Trump who has hardened the country's hostile rhetoric against Iran. Trump seems hell-bent on ditching the nuclear deal, which he has frequently hammered as a "disaster", and is currently seeking ways to stop fulfilling its end of the bargain.

Despite lacking any evidence to back up his claims, Trump wants to unilaterally declare Iran non-compliant to its obligations in mid-October, the next quarterly deadline for the US State Department to notify Congress of Iran's compliance with the accord.

This is while the UN nuclear watchdog and the US State Department have several times reported that Tehran has adhered to the agreement.

If Trump does so, the US Congress will have 60 days to debate whether to re-impose some or all unilateral US sanctions that were suspended when the deal went into effect in January 2016.

The Iranian spokesman said the deal can endure and be successful, provided all its signatories rigidly stick to their obligations, so those who fail to meet their commitments deserve a hefty penalty.

"If a country neglects to perform its duties, it must incur a heavy penalty, whether it's the US or any other," Qasemi said, without elaborating on Iran's possible reaction.

Iran's nuclear chief, Ali Akbar Salehi, said the country will continue to adhere to its obligations under the deal even if the US pulls out, as long as the Europeans remain committed.

"If the US leaves the treaty and Europe follows, then this deal will certainly collapse and Iran will go back to what it was before and, technically speaking, to a much higher level," he told the German magazine Der Spiegel in an interview published on September 8.

The nuclear chief was reiterating a warning by President Hassan Rouhani late last month that Iran could within days take its nuclear program to a level much more advanced than the beginning of the nuclear talks in 2013.


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