TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - President Rouhani made the remarks in a ceremony marking the beginning of the new educational year for universities at the Tehran University on Saturday.
“In the nuclear negotiations and the [resultant] JCPOA agreement, we gained things and advantages that are irreversible. No one can reverse them, neither Mr. Trump nor anyone else,” President Rouhani said, referring to the deal by its official abbreviation. “If 10 other Trumps emerged in the world [and attempted to undo the deal’s benefits], the benefits would be irreversible.”
During the nuclear talks, the Iranian president said, Iran demonstrated its “political might” to the world and showed that its diplomats were “adequately adept” to negotiate with world powers.
“In negotiating [with world powers], we showed that we are not just strong at war — we’re also strong at peace... Can that political power [just] go away?” he asked, rhetorically.
The JCPOA, short for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, was reached between Iran and the P5+1 countries — namely the US, Russia, China, France, Britain, and Germany — in July 2015 and took effect in January 2016. Under the deal, Iran undertook to apply certain limits to its nuclear program in exchange for the termination of all nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran.
However, the administration of US President Donald Trump, which took over in January 2017, one year after the JCPOA came into force, has been opposed to the accord. Trump himself has verbally attacked the deal numerous times and is reportedly planning to refuse to certify Iran’s compliance with the deal at a mid-October deadline under an American law.
Should Trump refuse to certify, the US Congress will have 60 days to decide whether to restore the sanctions against Iran that the US has agreed to waive under the deal. The re-imposition of nuclear-related sanctions would be a major non-performance of the deal by the US.
Elsewhere in his comments, the Iranian president suggested that the US was claiming it has been shortchanged in the deal, “which is of course wrong, because the deal has been based on a win-win framework.”
President Rouhani said Iran established its right to peaceful nuclear energy during the talks and with the JCPOA. “This victory is not reversible,” he said.