MOSCOW – The international nuclear deal signed with Iran in 2015 is on the brink of collapse, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday following a meeting with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif.
Lavrov laid the blame with Washington.
“This extremely important international diplomatic achievement, the Joint Plan of Action (JCPOA) for the Iranian nuclear program, is about to collapse,” Lavrov told the press, according to TASS.
Russia’s top diplomat said the United States has undermined the deal by withdrawing but said European signatories have also failed to uphold their end of the bargain.
“We are convinced that if this attitude imposed on all nations by Washington is maintained and the decisions of the United Nations Security Council are ignored, it will lead to serious negative consequences in the (Persian Gulf) region and in international relations,” he said.
The foreign minister met with Zarif in Russia.
Lavrov said Iran would re-apply its commitment to the agreement if the US and the EU did so, too.
He said failure to agree would allow those involved to assume that the agreement “died and no longer exists.”
“And then nobody will be bound by compromises,” he added.
Zarif said European states offered their political support for the deal, but no practical measures, especially when it comes to US sanctions.
Tensions between Iran and the US have skyrocketed since Donald Trump’s coming to power.
He withdrew Washington’s involvement in the deal, which also bears the signatures of China, Russia, the United Kingdom, France and Germany, in May 2018 and brought fresh sanctions against the regime in Tehran.
Further sanctions later that year squeezed Iran’s oil and banking sectors.
Tit-for-tat spats in the Persian Gulf sparked security concerns in the international community.
Trump wants Iran to abandon its ballistic missile program, which is not covered by the 2015 deal.
The Barack Obama-era agreement saw Tehran trade in much of its nuclear program for slacker international sanctions.
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani this year said Iran would stop adhering to some of the deal’s stipulations.