06:21 GMT +310 December 2019
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    The Iranian Army ended large-scale military drills Wednesday with a massive naval parade hosted by the country's President Hassan Rouhani

    Iran Joins China in Criticising US, UK Meddling in Beijing's Affairs Amid Taiwan, HK Tensions

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    Earlier, China accused the US of "unilateral bullying" against Iran and blamed Washington for the potential breakdown of the 2015 nuclear deal. Beijing has also promised to reject the US's "unilateral sanctions" policy amid reports that China has been defying US restrictions on Iranian crude oil sales abroad.

    Iran steadfastly supports the One China Policy and condemns the "destructive" interference by the UK and the US in China and the recent 'provocative moves' in Taiwan and Hong Kong in recent days, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Abbas Mousavi said in a statement late Friday.

    Mousavi's comments followed Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi's warning to the US Friday "not to play with fire" in Taiwan amid US plans to sell $2.2 billion in military hardware to the island, which China considers a breakaway province. Beijing has already announced plans to sanction the US companies planning to sell arms to Taiwan, and stressed that no foreign power can prevent the island's eventual reunification with the mainland.

    Earlier, amid protests in Hong Kong over an extradition bill, Chinese Ambassador to the UK Liu Xiaoming accused UK officials of making statements on the territory which amounted not only to meddling in the special administrative region's internal affairs, but to encouraging violence. The diplomat also charged the UK with seemingly forgetting that the region was no longer a British colony, prompting the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office to summon him over the "unacceptable" remarks.

    China, one of eight parties to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, a landmark 2015 agreement on Iran's nuclear program promising sanctions relief in exchange for a commitment from Tehran not to pursue nuclear weapons, has expressed support for Iran amid what it has described as US "bullying."

    Last week, amid Iran's backtracking on commitments under the nuclear deal, including a promise not to enrich uranium beyond the 3.67 per cent mark, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman suggested that the US policy of "maximum pressure" was "the root cause of the Iranian nuclear crisis."

    Earlier, US media reported that the Trump administration was 'seriously considering' giving China waivers on the import of Iranian oil despite its sanctions policy due to China's alleged disregard for sanctions and move to continue oil imports. In recent weeks, Chinese ports have reportedly taken in at least two major shipments of Iranian oil despite the US sanctions pressure.

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