Japan Offers to Mediate Between Iran, US
EghtesadOnline: The Japanese government hopes to mediate between the United States and Iran to rescue the landmark 2015 international nuclear deal, officials said.
“We note that Iran denies it is withdrawing from the nuclear deal,” Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasutoshi Nishimura told a news conference on Thursday after Tehran announced the suspension of some of its commitments under the 2015 agreement, Japan Times reported.
“We intend to contribute to regional peace and stability, utilizing our traditional friendly relations with Iran,” Nishimura added.
Tokyo has consistently supported the deal that terminated sanctions against Iran in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear development activities, according to Financial Tribune.
When the US government decided in May last year to withdraw from the accord, Japan acted in concert with European countries and said it would be extremely regrettable if the decision had a significant impact on the maintenance of the deal.
On Wednesday, US President Donald Trump issued an executive order imposing fresh sanctions to prohibit trade in metals, mainly steel, with Iran. Some Japanese officials say Tokyo should urge Washington to exercise restraint.
Amid heightened military tensions marked by the dispatch of a US carrier strike group to the Middle East, Tokyo is seeking ways to facilitate talks between Iran and the United States.
“Both sides are seeking dialogue,” a Foreign Ministry source said. “There’s a limit, but there’s also a role Japan can play.”