Iran nuclear deal: China, Iran make not-so-veiled comments to Trump
The foreign ministers of China, Iran met in Beijing on Monday
The foreign ministers of China and Iran on Monday urged governments not to violate the deal that limits Iran's nuclear activity in exchange for the lifting of sanctions, in remarks apparently directed at President-elect Donald Trump's incoming administration.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said during a visit to Beijing that the seven nations who agreed to the deal in July 2015 "have the obligation to fully implement" it.
"Iran will not allow any country to take unilateral action to violate the agreement and Iran has the right to take action against that," Zarif said at a news conference after meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
The deal, negotiated between Iran, the United States, China, Britain, France, Germany and Russia, outlined what the Iranian government had to do to pull back its nuclear program from the brink of weapons-making capacity. It also spelled out the West's obligations to end many financial, trade and oil sanctions that had battered Iran's economy. The deal went into effect in January and has been largely respected.
Wang said the "full implementation" of the agreement between Iran and six world powers was "the common and joint responsibility of all the parties involved, and it should not be affected by any change in the domestic situations of the countries concerned."
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Trump has vowed to renegotiate the terms of the deal and increase its enforcement. None of the other parties to the agreement has expressed interest in picking apart the deal, which took more than a decade of diplomatic efforts and almost two full years of negotiations to come about.
Tension between Iran and the United States over the accord had already risen before the election, after the U.S. Senate voted a 10-year extension of the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA). Iran vowed to retaliate.
A decision by Trump to scrap the deal would probably give Iran's hard-line Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps an opportunity to regain power it lost during talks between the current Iranian leadership and major nations.
Iran has said it seeks to expand economic and security ties with China, following a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping in January.
With files from Reuters