Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying on the Re-imposition of U.S. Sanctions on Iran (Excerpts)

November 5, 2018

Weapon Program: 

  • Nuclear

Q: On November 5, the United States restored its unilateral sanctions that cover Iran's energy and financial sectors. They are the second batch of sanctions the US has re-imposed since it withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Do you have any comment?

A: The Chinese side regrets the US decision and we also noted the widespread opposition to the unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction among the international community. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is a multilateral agreement ratified by the UN Security Council and should be implemented in a comprehensive and effective way. This is conducive to upholding the international nuclear non-proliferation regime as well as peace and stability in the Middle East and serves the common interests of the international community.

Despite the great changes that have taken place in the situation over the past half year, the existing participants of the JCPOA have remained committed to implementing the deal and maintaining normal economic cooperation and trade with Iran in a responsible manner, which is widely supported by the international community. We noted that the Iranian side by far has been strictly fulfilling its nuclear-related obligations under the JCPOA, and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has confirmed that for 12 times in a row. The Chinese side commends the endeavors made by the Iranian side.

Under the current circumstances, we hope that relevant parties will bear in mind the larger and long-term interests, fulfill due responsibilities and obligations and stand on the right side of history. With a fair, objective and responsible attitude, the Chinese side will continue to make unremitting efforts to uphold the JCPOA and firmly safeguard its own legal and legitimate rights and interests.

Q: Has the US government granted China an exemption from sanctions on the oil import from Iran?

A: We have stated China's position on many occasions. China is always opposed to unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction. The normal cooperation between China and Iran within the framework of international law is legal and legitimate, which should be respected and safeguarded.  

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Q: The Iranian President highlighted in an article published in Financial Times that it is essential that the European parties as well as China and Russia present and implement the final package of measures to compensate and mitigate the effects of America's latest sanctions on Iran. Has China submitted its package to the Iranian side yet? What are the basic elements of it?

A: As I stressed just now, despite great changes that have taken place in the situation over the past six months, the existing JCPOA participants have remained committed to implementing the deal and maintaining normal economic cooperation and trade with Iran in a responsible manner. The two foreign ministers' meetings held by the participants and the joint statements adopted have made clear this point. Under the current circumstances, we hope that relevant parties will bear in mind the larger and long-term interests, fulfill due responsibilities and obligations and stand on the right side of history. With a fair, objective and responsible attitude, the Chinese side will continue to make unremitting efforts to uphold the JCPOA.

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Q: Has China reduced oil imports from Iran?

A: I just made it very clear. China is always opposed to unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction. The normal cooperation between China and Iran within the framework of international law is legal and legitimate, and such rights should be respected and safeguarded. We will continue to maintain and implement the JCPOA and firmly safeguard our own legal and legitimate rights and interests.

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