Zarif: European commitment to JCPOA less than needed
The Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif has stressed that Tehran is not satisfied with Europe's commitment to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also stressing that INSTEX may become operational in the future.
Iran Press/ Asia: Speaking on Monday morning after arriving in Istanbul, Turkey to take part in the eighth foreign ministerial summit of the Heart of Asia conference, Zarif said: "We have a special relationship with all neighboring countries and most of my trips abroad are to these countries, such as Turkey and Russia."
Elaborating further Zarif said: "The Heart of Asia conference is dedicated to Afghanistan and the main aim of the conference is to coordinate the efforts of regional countries with regards to Afghanistan, and how the development of the country is progressing. Zarif said the latest events in Afghanistan, the stability of that country, and sustainable development, are all being discussed at the Istanbul summit.
He added: "Each regional nation is responsible for a certain aspect of Afghan reconstruction and development with the Islamic Republic of Iran being responsible for education and training."
Referring to the Afghan peace negotiations and the recent presidential elections in Afghanistan, Zarif said that the conditions in the country are quite unique at the moment and regional and neighboring countries need to play a more active role with regards to the peace process and reconstruction of the country.
Zarif reiterated that the Istanbul summit provides a good opportunity for regional countries to discuss the Afghan peace process.
Commenting on the JCPOA joint commission meeting in Vienna last Friday, Zarif said: "We are certainly not satisfied with the European Union and the European countries commitment to JCPOA, and this fact was stated plainly in the JCPOA joint commission meeting in Vienna last Friday by the three (non-European) countries Iran, China and Russia."
The 14th joint commission of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action convened on Friday at the level of deputy foreign ministers of Iran and the 4+1 Group, including Germany, France, Russia, China, and the United Kingdom in Vienna.
Elsewhere in his remarks Zarif said: "At the meeting in Vienna we also emphasized that if all JCPOA member states honor their commitments under the agreement, Iran would certainly reverse the recent steps that it has taken and fully honor its commitments under the deal."
Zarif cautiously praised the joining of six European countries to INSTEX, but emphasized that what was needed is for the special trading mechanism to become fully operational, something which has not happened up to now.
INSTEX, -short for 'Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges'- is a European special-purpose vehicle established in January 2019. Its mission is to facilitate non-USD transactions with Iran to avoid breaking US sanctions against Tehran.