Europes big powers joined with Russia and China in reaffirming their commitment to the Iran nuclear deal, once again rebuking U.S. President Donald Trump for his unilateral decision to withdraw from it.
Officials from the EU, Britain, France, Germany, China and Russia met in New York, where world leaders are gathered at the United Nations, and issued a statement saying they are committed to “ensure the full and effective implementation” of the accord, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) despite Trumps reimposition of economic sanctions.
The meeting on Monday also included Irans foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif. The EU was represented by its foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini.
The statement also confirms efforts by the Europeans to create a special corporate entity that would facilitate continued business transactions with Iran. The U.S. has vowed to punish any businesses that violate its sanctions, while the EU has been trying to thwart enforcement of the sanctions, including by adopting a blocking statute.
“Mindful of the urgency and the need for tangible results, the participants welcomed practical proposals to maintain and develop payment channels, notably the initiative to establish a special purpose vehicle, to facilitate payments related to Irans exports, including oil, and imports, which will assist and reassure economic operators pursuing legitimate business with Iran,” the statement says.
“The JCPOA participants reconfirmed their commitment to its full and effective implementation in good faith and in a constructive atmosphere,” the officials say. “They recalled that the JCPOA is a key element of the global non-proliferation architecture and a significant achievement of multilateral diplomacy endorsed unanimously by the U.N. Security Council through Resolution 2231.”
Trumps move has left the U.S. remarkably isolated, with all other permanent members of the U.N. Security Council still in support of the deal, though Washington has enjoyed the support of Israel and Saudi Arabia.
The now five guarantors of the nuclear deal cite “12 consecutive reports by the International Atomic Energy Agency” showing that Iran was meeting its commitments.
“Alongside implementation by Iran of its nuclear-related commitments, the lifting of sanctions, including the economic dividends arising from it, constitutes an essential part of the JCPOA,” the joint statement says.