Zarif: Snapback Mechanism Unimplementable
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said it would be impossible to implement the so-called snapback mechanism to renew the UN sanctions on Iran.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines a cabinet session in Tehran on Wednesday, Zarif underlined that the snapback mechanism could not be carried out.
“The snapback mechanism does not apply to Iran at all,” Zarif said, adding that Tehran has only referred to the JCPOA terms that allows for compensation.
“Our reasoning is absolutely clear, but the Europeans are making instrumental use (of the JCPOA), as they themselves know that this mechanism has no credibility and have announced that (their recent moves) do not mean using the snapback mechanism,” he added.
The Europeans are not ready to pay for their security, he deplored, saying the main problem lies with the US, which has withdrawn from the JCPOA.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran’s stance is explicit, which is negotiations under pressure will never be possible. They must stop the pressures and economic war and terrorism against people of Iran. In that case, it would be possible to discuss the implementation of the JCPOA,” he added.
The key point in the snapback mechanism is that in case of a failure to resolve a dispute among the parties to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the UNSC would vote on a resolution “to continue the sanctions lifting”, meaning that a single veto from one of the UNSC members (most likely from the US) would end the sanctions’ lifting and slap the previous sanctions against Tehran again.
According to the JCPOA, “If Iran believed that any or all of the E3/EU+3 were not meeting their commitments under this JCPOA, Iran could refer the issue to the Joint Commission for resolution; similarly, if any of the E3/EU+3 believed that Iran was not meeting its commitments under this JCPOA, any of the E3/EU+3 could do the same.”
Elsewhere in his remarks, Zarif made clear that the IAEA Board of Governors has no authority to make a decision about the JCPOA, and that the International Atomic Energy Agency can only make comments about the nuclear deal.
The top Iranian diplomat further dismissed any link between the UK capture of an Iranian oil tanker near Gibraltar and the case of Nazanin Zaghari, a dual Iranian-British citizen jailed on espionage charges.
“We have not received any proposal from Britain on this matter,” Zarif stressed.
“We deem London’s move to seize the Iranian oil tanker an act of maritime banditry,” he said.
The British Royal Marines seized giant Iranian oil tanker Grace 1 in international waters on June 4 for trying to take oil to Syria allegedly in violation of EU sanctions.
Tehran maintains that the supertanker was not bound for Syria and its seizure has taken place at the behest of the US.
Iran’s Foreign Ministry has summoned the British envoy to Tehran several times since Thursday in protest at the UK navy’s move.