Commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari has slammed the US for being an unreliable partner during his speech at a ceremony in Tehran, reports Fars News Agency. He noted that the fact that the US had abandoned an internationally endorsed agreement only proves this point. He also forecasted that Iran will have to rely on itself.
"Today, we are again witnessing that the US untrustworthiness has been proved. The US measure has been adopted to break Iran's resistance and it is not a new thing and we have been for years witnessing the enemies' evil intentions, therefore, we should rely on ourselves," he said.
At the same time, Jafari noted that although self-reliance brings independence to Iran, it will give other signatories to the JCPOA, namely Russia, China and the EU, a chance to guarantee that they will adhere to its provisions, despite the US withdrawal.
Earlier Jafari had expressed skepticism that European countries would be able to continue fulfill JCPOA provisions, as Europeans "are unable to make choices independent from the US."
Recently, several prominent European politicians announced their intent to promote the idea of a more independent EU foreign policy, since they can no longer rely on Washington after its latest move. The President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Junker said that the US had "lost its vigor" and suggested the EU must replace it as an international leader.
US President Donald Trump announced on May 8 that the US was withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), an international agreement reached in 2015 by Iran, the United States, Russia, France, China, the UK, Germany and the EU. The deal was designed to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and to ensure the peaceful nature of its nuclear program, lifting economic sanctions against the country in return.
Trump has criticized the Iran deal as "defective at its core." He demanded to "fix" it, threatening to withdraw the US from the deal and to re-impose economic sanctions. French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attempted to convince Trump to uphold the deal, but these efforts ultimately failed.
The re-imposed US sanctions will affect any company doing business with Tehran, putting European firms at risk, as they have heavily invested in Iran and will probably be unwilling to break ties with it. The US Security Adviser John Bolton recently noted that sanctions against European companies are not ruled out. The European countries are currently considering options to counter possible US sanctions against their companies. They also reaffirmed their commitment to the provisions of the Iran deal.
Iranian officials warned the US against the move, saying the deal won't work without it, despite EU efforts. Russia has expressed its regret about the US decision to abandon the JCPOA, but noted that Moscow will remain committed to the Iran deal.