Russia’s top diplomat doubts Iran nuclear deal will be fully restored

Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov has said the future of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal lies in the hands of the United States and Europe. He, meanwhile, expressed doubt that the landmark agreement will ever be fully restored.

Ryabkov, who is in Tehran for the “Iran and BRICS” conference, told reporters on Tuesday Iran has already demonstrated its willingness to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in its original form.

“However,” he continued, “due to reasons unrelated to the JCPOA, the Western countries have once again exploited this situation to exert pressure on Iran and gain concessions.”

“This is an unfair but common game that does not surprise us. It is their choice, and I don’t think we will see a complete revival of the JCPOA. I don’t know if any alternatives might be found or not,” he added.

The Russian diplomat urged Western leaders to “reassess what is in their interests” and distance themselves from the misguided policies of the Donald Trump administration, which unilaterally withdrew from the accord in 2018.

Ryabkov cautioned Iran against the hostile policies of the US, which he described as an unreliable partner, slamming Washington’s hostile policies towards Moscow and Tehran.

Iran and Russia commonly consider the US to be responsible for the problems that have faced the proper implementation of the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world countries, the Russian Foreign Ministry has cited the countries’ officials as saying.

The ministry issued the remarks in a statement on Tuesday following a meeting in Tehran between Ryabkov and his Iranian counterparts Ali Bagheri-Kani and Reza Najafi.

Tehran and Moscow were unanimous in believing that the failure to implement the deal stemmed from the “erroneous policy of ‘maximum pressure’ pursued by the United States and those who think similarly,” the statement read.

Iran proved the peaceful nature of its nuclear program to the world by signing the JCPOA with six world powers. However, Washington’s exit in May 2018 and its subsequent re-imposition of sanctions against Tehran left the future of the deal in limbo.

Multilateral diplomatic efforts to salvage the JCPOA have been stalled since last August, with Iran blaming the United States for failing to guarantee that it will not leave the deal again.

Iran has repeatedly announced that the JCPOA revival is possible if the US and the European signatories to the agreement have the will to reach that aim, warning that the opportunity will not last forever.

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