EghtesadOnline: Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif lambasted Germany, France and Britain, three of the European signatories to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, for echoing statements and claims made by the United States regarding Iran.
The top Iranian diplomat made the remarks on Sunday night, during a layover in the German city of Frankfurt on his way to Tehran from New York, where he attended the 74th UN General Assembly.
Zarif said when he met with the president of a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, whose country is nuclear-armed, he told the Iranian foreign minister that he could not do anything without the permission of US President Donald Trump, according to Financial Tribune.
“If these days you see that the Europeans are getting a little closer to the US and becoming its allies, it's not because they saw us in a weak spot, but because they have failed to stand up against the US,” Zarif said, addressing Iranian officials, their families and a group of Iranians living in the German city, Press TV reported.
Tensions have been running high between Iran and the US since May 2018, when Trump unilaterally pulled out his country from the multilateral nuclear deal with Iran, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, and unleashed the “toughest ever” sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
The American president is a strong critic of the deal, which was clinched in July 2015 by Iran and the P5+1 group of countries, including the US, France, Britain, China, Russia and Germany.
Ever since quitting the JCPOA, Trump has been trying to force Iran into accepting a more wide-ranging alternative that curbs Tehran’s missile program and regional influence mainly to appease American allies, Israel and some Persian Gulf Arab states.
For the past five months, Europe has been trying to give us credit in return for the sale of the Iranian crude oil to make the country stay in JCPOA, but it has not been able to even take this small step because it is not even allowed by its master to spend its own money for its own security, Zarif said.
Back in January, Britain, France and Germany (aka E3) announced the establishment of a mechanism aimed at enabling non-dollar transactions between the 28-nation bloc and Iran, called the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX).
The mechanism was supposed to circumvent US sanctions, but in reality not much has been achieved. Trade with Iran has not recovered via INSTEX, because the three so-called European powers were totally spineless in facing off the US threats and all of them have ultimately bowed and prostrated before Trump.
Instead of upholding their JCPOA commitments by ensuring economic benefits to Iran as required under the nuclear agreement, the E3 first pushed Iran to talk with the US (and in turn agree to its hostile demands) and then threatened to themselves withdraw from the deal.
By not adhering to their commitments, the three European states have technically withdrawn from JCPOA.
Iran has time and again said it will not talk with Trump until all US sanctions are lifted first.