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    Iranian flag outside the building housing the reactor of the Bushehr nuclear power plant. (File)

    ASEM Summit Reaffirms Support for JCPOA, Lifting of Sanctions Against Iran

    © AFP 2018 / BEHROUZ MEHRI
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The participants of the 12th Asia–Europe Meeting (ASEM) have reaffirmed their collective support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, noting that the lifting of sanctions against Tehran is an essential part of the agreement, the ASEM chair's statement released on Friday said.

    "With regard to Iran, Leaders reiterated their collective support for diplomatic dialogue and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action… Leaders recognized that, alongside full and effective implementation by Iran of its nuclear-related commitments, the lifting of sanctions including the consequences arising from it constitutes an essential part of the JCPOA. Preserving the nuclear deal with Iran is a matter of respecting international agreements, and promoting international security, peace, and stability,"  the ASEM chair's statement read.

    Washington withdrew from the JCPOA in May and, pledging to reinstate anti-Iranian sanctions over several waves, with financial restrictions introduced this past summer and energy sanctions planned for November 4. Despite the US withdrawal, other signatories, including Russia, China, France, Germany, and the UK confirmed their commitment to the nuclear deal.

    Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula

    The participants also addressed the situation in North Korea, calling Pyongyang to return to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

    "Leaders called on the DPRK to completely, verifiably and irreversibly dismantle all its nuclear and other Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), ballistic missiles and related programmes and facilities in accordance with the relevant UNSC resolutions … In this context, they urged the DPRK to return to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and IAEA safeguards at an early date and to cooperate with its monitoring system," the document read.

    READ MORE: After Meeting Kim, Pompeo Says Now Sees Path to Denuclearized North Korea

    Earlier this month, Russian, Chinese and North Korean deputy foreign ministers have stated that the UN Security Council (UNSC) should begin timely revision of the sanctions against Pyongyang, also expressing their support for the negotiation process between North Korea and the US, as well as inter-Korean talks.

    Security Cooperation

    The delegations of the meeting also announced in the statement that the countries would promote cooperation on the security issues in different regions of the world.

    "Leaders also exchanged views on the ways to promote and strengthen cooperation on peace and security issues of common interest and concern including Afghanistan, Syria, the Middle East, and North Africa, Ukraine," the document read.

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    summit, ASEM, Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK), Iran, Europe, Asia
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