December 21, 2020, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attended the foreign minister’s video conference on the Iranian nuclear issue. The meeting was presided over by Borelli, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, attended by Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif, Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov, French Foreign Minister Ludrian, German Foreign Minister Mas, British Foreign Minister Raab and others.
Wang Yi said that in the past year, the situation of the Iranian nuclear issue has undergone important changes. The withdrawal of the United States from the Comprehensive Agreement and the pressure on Iran’s limit are the root cause of the deviation of the Iranian nuclear issue in the right direction.
The United States changes its course, returns to the comprehensive agreement and resumes compliance, which is the right way to fundamentally resolve the crisis. At present, the situation in Iraq has reached a critical juncture again. U.S. President-elect Biden has made it clear that he is willing to return to the agreement. At the same time, the pressure on Iran by the United States is still intensifying. The comprehensive agreement has both a window of opportunity to get back on track and unprecedented risks and challenges. In this regard, China puts forward four points:
First, we should unswervingly maintain the comprehensive agreement. We should maintain strategic determination, oppose extreme pressure more clearly, more actively maintain the comprehensive agreement, take the initiative to do the work of all parties, buy time and space for the situation, and promote the Iranian nuclear situation to develop in the direction expected by the international community.
Second, we should promote the early return of the United States to the comprehensive agreement. The United States should return to the agreement unconditionally as soon as possible and lift sanctions against Iraq and third-party entities and individuals.
On this basis, Iran fully resumes the implementation of its commitments in the nuclear field. Neither party should impose any other conditions for this purpose.
China suggests that the participants in the comprehensive agreement should consult on this matter as soon as possible. After reaching an agreement, consider convening an international conference between the participants in the agreement and the United States to start the process of returning the United States to the agreement.
Third, we should settle the performance dispute fairly and objectively. Blaming and exerting pressure can only weaken the consensus to uphold the comprehensive agreement, and dialogue and cooperation can help achieve a balance between rights and obligations.
To maintain unity and control differences, Iraq’s legitimate economic interests should be safeguarded. We should continue to deal with the Security Council’s nuclear issue related to Iran safely, support the International Atomic Energy Agency to carry out verification of Iraq, and deepen cooperation with Iran.
Fourth, we should properly handle regional security issues. A comprehensive agreement is not a panacea for all problems. Directly linking regional security issues to the comprehensive agreement will become a self-set roadblock in the resumption of compliance process.
China proposes to set up a special multilateral dialogue platform for the Gulf region to launch an inclusive dialogue process and continuously build consensus on regional security issues from easy to difficult. We are also willing to strengthen docking, communicate with each other and form a synergy with the initiatives put forward by Russia and others.
Wang Yi stressed that China will maintain and implement the comprehensive agreement as always.
China is also willing to work with all parties to promote the early restoration of the integrity and effective implementation of the comprehensive agreement and better maintain peace and stability in the Middle East.
After the meeting, the parties issued a joint statement reaffirming their commitment to upholding the comprehensive agreement and Security Council resolution 2231 to ensure their complete and effective implementation; reiterated their deep regret for the withdrawal agreement of the United States and stressing that Security Council resolution 2231 remains fully valid; endorsed the prospects for the United States to return to the agreement and agreed to work together.
to promote the United States to return to the comprehensive agreement as soon as possible.