Today, on the fifth anniversary of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the preservation of the agreement is more important than ever. The JCPOA was concluded on 14 July 2015 and subsequently endorsed unanimously by the UN Security Council (Resolution 2231). It is a historic multilateral achievement for global nuclear non-proliferation and is contributing to regional and global security.
The JCPOA remains the only tool to provide the international community with the necessary assurances regarding Iran’s nuclear programme. It consists of nuclear-related commitments to be implemented by Iran in exchange for sanctions-lifting by the international community with a view to normalising trade and economic relations with Iran. The agreement also provides for unprecedented monitoring and verification by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and I commend the continuous professional, technical and impartial work of the agency. The full implementation of the JCPOA by all sides remains crucial.
Regrettably the US decided in May 2018 to withdraw from the JCPOA and have not participated in any meeting or activity since. The remaining participants of the JCPOA continue to work collectively to address, within the framework of the agreement, existing concerns regarding nuclear implementation, as well as the wider impacts of the withdrawal of the United States from the JCPOA and its re-imposition of sanctions.
As the Coordinator of the JCPOA Joint Commission, I am determined to do everything possible together with the remaining participants of the JCPOA and the international community to preserve the agreement. We should not assume that an opportunity will arise again in the future for the international community to address Iran’s nuclear programme in such a comprehensive manner.