It is with deep concern that the South African government has noted the decision of the United States (US) government to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between the P5 +1 and the Islamic Republic of Iran.
As a matter of principle, and deeply rooted in its foreign policy, South Africa supports multilateral diplomacy and the peaceful resolution of conflict. The JCPOA is a significant achievement in this regard. It provides a framework of confidence under which the Islamic Republic of Iran can pursue the development of its nuclear capabilities for civilian purposes.
In addition, the agreement was unanimously endorsed by the UN Security Council in resolution 2231, which establishes a binding legal framework to resolve the dispute over Iran’s nuclear programme.
“It is important that the progress made over many years of negotiation should not be lost. Since its adoption, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action has contributed significantly to the reduction of tensions over Iran’s nuclear programme and still has an important role to play in promoting peace, stability and the normalisation of relations,” President Cyril Ramaphosa said.
In the interest of regional and international peace and security, the South African government calls on the other parties of the JCPOA to continue to honour their commitments under the Agreement. In this regard, the decision of the United States should not prevent the remaining parties from honouring their commitments, nor should it impact negatively on the relevant structures and mechanisms created by the JCPOA.