US exploiting Iran protests to ‘undermine & shatter’ nuclear deal – Moscow
Russia’s Foreign ministry slammed Washington’s “destructive” approach to the deal, with Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov accusing the US of using the situation in Iran, which has been gripped by violent protests during the past week, as an excuse to undermine the nuclear agreement.
“The current situation, when Washington falls to temptation to use the moment to raise new issues regarding to the JCPOA, shows the deliberate attempt to undermine and shatter the international community's commitment the JCPOA,” Ryabkov told TASS on Thursday. The diplomat also stressed that what is going on in the Islamic republic is a domestic issue, and urged the US to refrain from meddling.
The deputy foreign minister also reminded the US that the P5+1 initiative was no bilateral agreement, but the result of difficult and lengthy negotiations, which cannot be unilaterally amended.
“It is a destructive approach to arbitrarily snatch out of the total package only what suits the Americans and demand to change those provisions that Americans are not satisfied with for unknown reasons,” Ryabkov stated. He also warned that such an approach could undermine the whole deal, which took years of hard work to finalize.
While the US continues to stir up tension, with the US envoy to the UN, Nikki Hayley, vowing to call for a UN Security Council meeting, Russia reminded its American counterparts that the international body’s task is to oversee international peace and security, but not states’ internal policies.
On #IranProtests, Pence says that Trump “is weighing additional actions to punish the regime for its belligerent behavior and assault on its own citizens,” days ahead of critical deadlines on the #Iran nuclear deal and requisite sanctions waivers.— Michael Wilner (@mawilner) January 4, 2018
It is not the first time that the Russian foreign ministry has lashed at US hardline rhetoric towards Iran. Earlier this week, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova advised the US to remember its own experience in “putting down protests,” including mass arrests and crackdown against the Occupy Wall Street movement and operations against protesters in Ferguson, Missouri.
Some US NATO allies, France and Turkey, failed to support Washington’s position on the ongoing protests in Iran. While French President Emmanuel Macron told the US that hostile rhetoric could lead to a war, the Turkish leader’s spokesman, Ibrahim Kalin, also echoed this position, warning external parties against meddling in Iran's domestic affairs.