August 19, 2018

Alireza Jahangiri and the Iran nuclear deal

H. E. Alireza Jahangiri, Ambassador of Iran.

The Ambassador of H.E. Dr.  Alireza Jahangiri, met once again with the media in a press meeting breakfast at his residency. Early in the morning and before the start his agenda of the day he asked several journalists on their opinion of the Iran nuclear deal and the recent view of the United States on it.

With this, he began the conversation one of the most important subjects of contemporary politics, namely the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). This nuclear deal, according to Jahangiri, is a great achievement in the international arena as it can be viewed as a triumph of diplomacy over confrontation. Therefore, the deal should be maintained by all means.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has confirmed Iran’s commitment to JCPOA over ten times, therefore indicating that Iran is fulfilling all the required obligations. However, as stated by the Ambassador, “the government of the United States has wrong interpretations on the deal, as it regards it as an economic deal rather than a non-proliferation tool. Therefore, it is rather about security vs. insecurity instead of access to markets. With this increasing hostility and uncertainty from the side of the United States of America, skepticism about the continuity of America’s participation in the agreement is heightened.”

Nevertheless, the main concern for Iran is cautioning European countries against wavering on issues that go beyond of the scope of the nuclear agreement. For history not to repeat itself, it is imperative that Europe helps Iran to ensure that the agreement will be maintained. Before the talks that lead to the 2015 nuclear deal, Iran already negotiated with Britain, France and Germany, who then persuaded the American president at the time, George W. Bush, to give diplomacy a chance. As a return, Iran was asked to temporarily freeze on uranium-enrichment-related activities to establish confidence.

“Two years after negotiation, European states, under pressure from the US, were demanding that Iran should abandon all enrichment activities. Following this, the negotiation talks fell apart without any result. Following sporadic talks, in 2013, negotiations began once again, this time directly with the United States. The point on ending uranium enrichment within Iranian soil was not mentioned anymore, therefore also leading to successful negotiations. The nuclear deal that was established out of this created a good opportunity for cooperation between European states and Iran. “

According to Jahangiri, Europe should not pander to Washington’s determination to focus the shift on what he considers to be an unnecessary crisis as this will only bring back dynamics of mistrust and insecurities. The Islamic Republic of Iran considers any non-nuclear sanctions against itself to only further complicate the situation, therefore also having a detrimental impact on the JCPOA.

In fact, Iran is preparing for a worst case scenario in which the nuclear deal would fail. This clearly illustrates that Iran not under all circumstances will remain committed. Iran’s military capabilities are entirely defensive, as stated by the Ambassador, which stems from sober geostrategic calculations as well as moral and religious convictions. This position is further based on the historical experience by Iran.

Through the Iran-Iraq war, Saddam Hussein rained Soviet-made missiles on the cities, on which the world not only kept silent on but then would also not enable Iran to buy weapons in order to deter the aggressor at the time. Because of this, Iran believes that missiles are an effective means of deterrence and the focus on precision rather than range has opened up the possibility for striking back with pinpoint accuracy. No administration of Iran will leave its people defend less, a crucial point European states and the international community should realize. Important stakeholders in the region and internationally remain reluctant to hold the arsonist to account in the conflicts within the region.”

“Dr. Mohammad Javad Zafir, the Foreign Minister of Iran, presented a proposal in 2015 for a regional dialogue forum in order to bring Iran and its neighbors together to work towards peace. This is making Iran hopeful that stakeholders outside the region of the Middle East will focus their efforts on urging their allies to propose such peace. Iran hopes that such dialogue can be the beginning of a good start towards peaceful times.”

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Photography by G.N.S. NL.

 

 

 

 

 

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