E3 Ready to Continue Engagement for De-Escalation
EghtesadOnline: Three European powers reiterated on Sunday their readiness to continue engagement with Iran for de-escalation and stability in the region.
“We remain ready to engage with Iran on this agenda in order to preserve the stability of the region,” leaders of France, Germany and the United Kingdom said in a statement published by the British government’s website.
The already volatile Middle East region has seen heightened tensions over the past few weeks, as the United States initiated military action against Iranian forces in Iraq and was met by Iran's response, Financial Tribune reported.
Echoing US hawkish views, the statement accused Iran of destabilizing the region through the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, calling on Tehran to “refrain from further violent action”.
“We must address—through diplomacy and in a meaningful way—shared concerns about Iran's destabilizing regional activities,” it contended.
They also reiterated their toothless commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal, without commenting on their failure to fulfill their side of the deal.
The statement stressed that it plays a key role in guaranteeing European countries’ common security interests, which include “upholding the nuclear non-proliferation regime and ensuring that Iran never develops a nuclear weapon”.
Iran has firmly declared that it does not seek to build nuclear weapons and its programs exclusively serve peaceful purposes, which has been confirmed by regular inspections carried out by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Still, as a sign of good faith, Iran agreed to curb its civilian nuclear program under the multinational agreement called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
The US put the deal in jeopardy by unilaterally withdrawing from it in 2018 and reimposing sanctions on Tehran.
“Together, we have made clear our regret and concern at the decision by the United States to withdraw from the JCPOA and to reimpose sanctions on Iran … Despite increasingly difficult circumstances, we have worked hard to preserve the agreement," the European countries said once again in the statement.
Iranian authorities have reduced their compliance with JCPOA because of the US withdrawal and the European failure to ensure the benefits promised to Iran under the nuclear deal.
Europe’s Pathetic Efforts
While apparently remaining within the deal, the European parties have made halfhearted efforts to counteract the effects of sanctions without success, as they lacked the will and the courage to stand up to US bullying.
On the contrary, the three European countries have been calling on Iran ever since to return to full compliance without fulfilling their own obligations.
"We remain committed to the JCPOA and to preserving it; we urge Iran to reverse all measures inconsistent with the agreement and return to full compliance … These actions must be reversed," the statement said.
Iranian officials have kept a window open for diplomacy by announcing repeatedly that all the nuclear steps are immediately reversible once the country’s economic woes are addressed through the removal of sanctions or the launch of effective mechanisms to bypass them.
“We reserve recourse to all the provisions of the JCPOA to preserve it and to resolve the issues related to Iran’s implementation of its JCPOA commitments within its framework,” the three powers said, referring to the deal’s dispute resolution mechanism that could lead to the restoration of United Nations sanctions on Iran once triggered.
However, the three European countries know for sure that the restoration of UN sanctions will be the last nail in the JCPOA coffin, so they better do more than just strike these grandstanding postures.