On May 8, US President Donald Trump officially announced the US withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and ordered to reimpose sanctions on Tehran. Countries, including other members of the Iran nuclear deal immediately reacted this decision.
On May 8, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Trump’s announcement saying it is “correct, intelligent and courageous”, according to The Jewish Week newspaper. Netanyahu pointed out that Israel had been “opposed the nuclear deal from the start”.
“The removal of sanctions under the deal has already produced disastrous results. The deal didn’t push war further away, it actually brought it closer. The deal didn’t reduce Iran’s aggression, it dramatically increased it, and we see this across the entire Middle East,” Netanyahu said.
Saudi Arabia joined Israel and welcomed the withdrawal of the US from the Iran nuclear deal. On May 8, Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir twitted:
We support and welcome the withdrawal of the United States from Iran nuclear deal, support the decision to reinstating economic sanctions on Iran, and continue to work with our partners to address the dangers posed by the policies of #Iran
— عادل بن أحمد الجبير (@AdelAljubeir) May 8, 2018
On May 8, the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation called on “the international community and the other states that are party to the agreement, to support President Trump’s stand for making the Middle East a zone free of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction, in order to maintain global security and stability”, the state-run Emirates news agency WAM reported quoting the official statement.
UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Mohammed Gargash also expressed his support to Washington’s decision.
Iran’s rhetoric & aggressive regional actions were the background to a flawed deal. The veneer of Tehran’s compliance contradicted its bellicose policies. President Trump’s decision is the correct one.
— د. أنور قرقاش (@AnwarGargash) May 8, 2018
China didn’t support the US decision over the Iran nuclear deal and opposed “the imposition of unilateral sanctions and the so-called long-arm jurisdiction by any country in accordance with its domestic laws”. On May 9, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang stressed that China would continue relations with Iran:
“China and Iran maintain normal economic ties and trade. We will continue with our normal and transparent practical cooperation with Iran on the basis of not violating our international obligations.”
On May 10, Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov said that Russia is “concerned about the decision by the US President’s Administration” stressing that it is “a major violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2231 which approved that plan and made it part of international law”.
“Unilateral American sanctions against Iran, if Washington tries again to apply this portion of restrictions extraterritorially, will, of course, undermine in the most serious manner the general situation in the region and in relations between the US and Europe, the US and Russia”, Lavrov said.
On May 8, UK Prime Minister Theresa May, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel issued a joint statement following the US announcement. According to the statement, Germany, France and the UK called on all the other members of the JCPOA to stay in the agreement.
“Together, we emphasise our continuing commitment to the JCPoA. This agreement remains important for our shared security. We recall that the JCPoA was unanimously endorsed by the UN Security Council in resolution 2231. This resolution remains the binding international legal framework for the resolution of the dispute about the Iranian nuclear programme. We urge all sides to remain committed to its full implementation and to act in a spirit of responsibility,” the statement reads.
Germany’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Heiko Maas called Trump’s decision “not surprising” and “hard to understand” according to the German broadcaster Deutsche Welle report on May 9.
“Our goal is clear: We will continue to abide by the nuclear agreement,” Maas said.
“It’s in our own security interests. So we’ll work to ensure the agreement has a future. It’s the successful result of many years of diplomatic negotiations. And, above all, it works.”
"We call upon Iran to react calmly and to continue fulfilling its duties under the agreement," Maas said.
— DW | Politics (@dw_politics) May 9, 2018
French President Emmanuel Macron expressed the “disagreement with the Donald Trump’s decision”, which must be “negotiated” to change the situation.
Sur l'Iran nous avons un désaccord avec le Président Trump. Nous pouvons le dépasser avec une négociation plus large.
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) May 9, 2018
On May 9, French Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian pointed out that the nuclear deal “is still not dead”, but described the US sanctions “unacceptable”, according to France 24 news agency.
On May 9, UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson gave a statement to underline that Trump’s decision “makes no difference” to the British stance over the JCPOA and the deal will “remain vital for our national security and the stability of the Middle East”.
Deeply regret US decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. UK remains strongly committed to the JCPoA, and will work with E3 partners and the other parties to the deal to maintain it. Await more detail on US plan.
— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) May 8, 2018
North Korea, which moves “towards denuclearization”, hasn’t commented the Trump decision over the withdrawal from the JPOA. The silence seems to be interesting as during the becoming June 10 North Korea-USA summit, Trump aims to guard against Kim’s nuclear weapons programs.
The highly anticipated meeting between Kim Jong Un and myself will take place in Singapore on June 12th. We will both try to make it a very special moment for World Peace!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 10, 2018