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Spokesperson's Comment on US Demand for Snapback on Iran in the Security Council

2020/08/20

Q: It is reported that the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo today demanded the Security Council invoke a snapback mechanism on Iran. He also said that the United States will sanction Russia and China if the two countries disregard the US demand of re-imposition of United Nations sanctions on Iran. What is China's comment?

A: The US demand has no legal ground and common sense. It is nothing but a political show staged by the United States. It receives no support of the Security Council members and no acknowledgment of the international community.

The JCPOA, endorsed by UNSC Resolution 2231, has the force of international law. In May 2018, the United States unilaterally withdrew from the JCPOA and reinstated illegal unilateral sanctions against Iran. This violated the JCPOA and UNSC Resolution 2231. Having quit the JCPOA, the United States is no longer a participant to the JCPOA and has no right to demand the Security Council invoke a snapback as stipulated in Resolution 2231. In the meantime, a snapback mechanism should never be invoked until all efforts are made to exhaust dispute resolution process specified in the JCPOA. Therefore, the JCPOA participants and overwhelming majority of the Security Council members believe that the US demand has no legal basis, and a snapback mechanism has not been invoked. Ambassador Zhang Jun has sent a letter to the President of the Security Council, expressing China's opposition to the US demand.

China will work with relevant parties to continue to uphold the just position, resolutely preserve the JCPOA and UNSC resolution, safeguard multilateralism, the authority of the Security Council, the international non-proliferation regime and regional peace and stability, and seek a political and diplomatic solution to the Iranian nuclear issue. At the same time, we are firmly against US unilateral sanctions and "long-arm jurisdiction" against other countries in the name of Iranian nuclear issue, and will continue to safeguard our legitimate rights and interests.

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