Iran committed to INF Treaty despite ‘unacceptable’ US sanction: Foreign Minister Zarif

Tokyo, May 16: Iranian foreign minister has said on Thursday Tehran will remain committed to its compliances under the landmark international nuclear treaty despite the United States withdrawal from the International Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, calling the reimposition of US sanctions as “unacceptable”.

According to Reuters news reports, FM Mohammad Javad Zarif made this remark during a meeting with Japanese foreign minister Taro Kono in Tokyo amid heightened sanction in the Middle East, fuelling concerns Iran and the US are heading towards conflict.

Zarif said Tehran is exercising “maximum restraint in spite of the fact the United States withdrew from (the) JCPOA last May”.

Zarif was referring to the pact, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which was inked by Iran, the US and other nations in 2015, which aimed at curbing Iranian uranium enrichment capacity in return of sanctions relief.

US President Donald Trump pulled out Washington from the 2015 agreement last year, further ratcheting up pressure over Tehran, aiming at strangling Iran’s economy by putting an end to Iranian crude oil exports.

“We believe that escalation by the United States is unacceptable and uncalled for,” Zarif told Kono in front of reporters before they met privately.

In a meeting, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told Zarid, “I’m concerned that the situation in the Middle East is becoming very tense.”

Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) chief has warned on Wednesday Tehran was on a brink of a “full-scale confrontation with the enemy”, a day after nation’s supreme chief Ayatollah Ali Khamenei stated there would be no war with America amid tensions escalation.

 

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