JCPOA to catalyze Iran-China relations: Zarif

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) and Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang meet in Beijing on September 15, 2015. © IRNA

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says a nuclear agreement reached between Iran and six world powers will pave the way for the country’s enhanced relations with China.

“Iran has always regarded China as a strategic partner, and bilateral relations will undoubtedly improve following the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA),” Zarif said in a meeting with Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang in Beijing on Tuesday.

He praised China’s “positive” role in the nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 countries and expressed hope that Beijing would proceed with its approach.

On July 14, Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia -- plus Germany finalized the text of the JCPOA in the Austrian capital of Vienna.

Under the JCPOA, limits will be put on Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for, among other things, the removal of all economic and financial bans against the Islamic Republic.

The Chinese premier, for his part, said the Vienna nuclear agreement would help solve ongoing problems in the Middle East and across the world.

Li threw his country’s weight behind the Iran-P5+1 nuclear agreement and expressed hope that all the sides involved in the nuclear negotiations would respect their commitments under the JCPOA.

He said Tehran and Beijing can bolster their relations in various fields after the implementation of the JCPOA and the ensuing lifting of sanctions on Iran.

Heading a high-ranking delegation, the Iranian foreign minister arrived in Beijing Monday night and held talks with senior Chinese officials about the Vienna nuclear agreement and ways to boost mutual relations.

It was Zarif’s first visit to China after the conclusion of the nuclear agreement.

The top Iranian diplomat wrapped up his trip to Beijing and set off for Bangladesh’s capital of Dhaka.

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