May 16, 2019 11:03 UTC
  • Iran showing maximum restraint despite US exit from nuclear deal: Zarif

In a visit to Japan, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says Tehran is showing “maximum restraint” in the face of the United States’ unilateral exit from the 2015 nuclear deal and the “unacceptable” re-imposition of sanctions against the Iranian nation.

According to Press TV, speaking at the start of a meeting with his Japanese counterpart, Taro Kono, in Tokyo on Thursday, Zarif stressed that the Islamic Republic is exercising “maximum restraint in spite of the fact the United States withdrew from (the) JCPOA last May,” referring to the nuclear accord by the acronym of its official name, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

The top diplomat also noted that Iran is still committed to its obligations under the JCPOA and that continued assessments proved this fact.

 “We believe that escalation by the United States is unacceptable and uncalled for,” Zarif added.

Kono, for his part, voiced serious concerns about the situation in the Middle East.

“I will spare no effort to ease tensions and try to resolve outstanding issues,” he added.

The top Japanese diplomat further said that it was essential to maintain the JCPOA, demanding that Iran keep implementing it.

After the private meeting, Zarif said that he had explained to his Japanese counterpart ways to ease regional tensions and stop America’s warmongering. He also reaffirmed that Iran is not seeking a conflict, but strongly defends its interests.

He also noted that Kono had expressed Japan’s commitment to the JCPOA and its keenness to adopt diplomatic measures meant to reduce tensions in the region.

If the international community wants to preserve the JCPOA, it should take steps to normalize economic ties with Iran as stipulated in the agreement, Zarif added.

Additionally on Thursday, Zarif held talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

At the meeting, Abe expressed Tokyo’s willingness to maintain and develop its traditionally friendly ties with Tehran.

“I’m concerned that the situation in the Middle East is becoming very tense,” the Japanese premier said.