MOSCOW, May 14. /TASS/. Top Russian and Iranian diplomats Sergey Lavrov and Mohammad Javad Zarif will discuss at a meeting in Moscow on Monday the possibility of preserving the Iran nuclear deal in the wake of Washington’s decision to withdraw from it.
Zarif is currently on a tour of the countries that are the parties to the agreement on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to hold consultations to salvage the deal. On May 13, he visited China, and after the talks with Lavrov he will travel to Brussels where he will meet with EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini and top German, French and British diplomats. The Iranian foreign minister will thus have consultations will all parties to the nuclear deal, except for the US.
Lavrov and Zarif have other issues to discuss as well, primarily the situation in Syria, which deteriorated in the wake of Washington’s decision to withdraw from the JCPOA. On May 8, when US President Donald Trump announced his decision to quit the deal, Israel delivered strikes on Iranian military positions in Syria, according to Syrian media. A new exchange of strikes occurred on May 10. The exacerbation of relations between Israel and Iran over Syria has sparked Moscow’s concern, the Russian Foreign Ministry said. However, the fate of the JCPOA is expected to top the agenda of the meeting.
On May 8, US President Donald Trump announced Washington’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal as it, he said, leaves Tehran a possibility to create a nuclear bomb bypassing all the restrictions. He noted another agreement with Iran should be signed.
Meanwhile, UK Prime Minister Theresa May, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel issued a joint statement calling on all other parties to the JCPOA to stay committed to their liabilities under it.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani reiterated his country’s commitment to the deal, saying Teheran will continue to implement its liabilities.
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), known as the deal on Iran’s nuclear program, was signed between Iran and six international mediators (the United Kingdom, Germany, China, Russia, the United States, and France) on July 14, 2015. On January 16, 2016, the parties to the deal announced beginning of its implementation. Under the deal, Iran undertakes to curb its nuclear activities and place them under total control of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in exchange for removal of the sanctions imposed previously by the United Nations Security Council, the European Union and the United States over its nuclear program.