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US not empowered to violate nuclear deal: Iran

5 December 2016 16:09

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Iran says the United States is not empowered to violate the nuclear agreement reached between the Islamic Republic and six world countries last year.

“The US cannot [violate the deal] and is not in the position to move in the opposite direction of this accord and oppose it, nor is any other country,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Monday in his weekly address to the press.

The accord, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), was clinched in July 2015 between Iran on the one side, and the US, Britain, Russia, France and China plus Germany on the other. It lifted nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran in exchange for limits on its nuclear activities.

Qassemi further said given the agreement’s multi-national nature, “it will have a strong international backing and its contravention is not something that could happen easily.”

Recently, the US Congress voted to extend Washington’s sanctions law against the Islamic Republic, known as the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA), although the JCPOA has removed all nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran.

On his campaign trail, US president-elect Donald Trump had made several highly-controversial remarks against the accord, raising speculations that Washington may take steps in breach of the accord under the new government.

Qassemi said Iran had made “all necessary calculations” to respond should the US reneges on its promises.

“We will not let others violate the Iranian people’s rights,” said Qassemi, stressing that the Iranian administration will defend the nation’s rights.

“A country, which is about to celebrate the 38th anniversary of its [Islamic] Revolution and has braved several rounds of US sanctions, has no worries about new ones.”

The official, however, said Tehran was still monitoring the developments inside the US, adding, “One should see whether the US president would veto the ISA or not.”

‘Myanmar must stop Muslim plight’

Elsewhere in his remarks, Qassemi said the Islamic Republic was against discrimination of any kind against the world’s minorities.

In the same context, he called on Myanmar to the persecution of its Rohingya Muslims, which has raised concerns among international rights groups over the past months.

The 1.1 million-strong minority, which the government brands as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh, has been suffering widely-reported systematic aggression for years.

The Myanmarese army has recently stepped up its crackdown on Rohingya Muslims in the state of Rakhine following a deadly attack on the country’s border guards on October 9. The government blamed the assault on armed Rohingyas.

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