60 day ultimatum is indication that Tehran’s patience is running thin: Mehran Kamrava
Mehran Kamrava, a professor of the Middle East Studies in Georgetown University of Doha, tells the Tehran Times that “Clearly, the status quo of where JCPOA is today has become untenable. Today Iran is the only party that is living up to the terms of the agreement. The U.S. pulled out a year ago, and the EU has done very little of what the agreement obligates it to do.”
Director of the Center for International and Regional Studies at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service in Qatar also adds “On the one hand European Union have been calling on Iran to abide by the terms of the JCPOA while on the other hand they have neither stood up to the United States nor even fulfilled their own obligations under the agreement.”
Kamrava also adds that “While the agreement has existed on paper, in practice it has actually become an agreement of only one actor, namely Iran. The 60 day ultimatum is an indication that Tehran’s patience is running thin.”
Following is the text of the interview:
Q: Iran is preparing to halt its implementation of some key parts of the JCPOA for 60 days. What is your assessment of this?
A: The European Union has been trying to have its cake and eat it too. On the one hand they have been calling on Iran to abide by the terms of the JCPOA while on the other hand they have neither stood up to the United States nor even fulfilled their own obligations under the agreement. They have been dragging their feet because of their own Iranophobia and also because they are unable, or unwilling, to stand up to the U.S. Iran, meanwhile, has lived up to all its obligations under the agreement. So while the agreement has existed on paper, in practice it has actually become an agreement of only one actor, namely Iran. The 60 day ultimatum is an indication that Tehran’s patience is running thin. Although the EU has rejected the ultimatum, this may be a positive move that prompts the Europeans to finally deliver on their end of the bargain.
Q: What is the future of JCPOA according to new development?
A: Clearly, the status quo of where JCPOA is today has become untenable. Today Iran is the only party that is living up to the terms of the agreement. The U.S. pulled out a year ago, and the EU has done very little of what the agreement obligates it to do. So there are two possible scenarios out of the deadlock: either the agreement completely collapses, with Iran formally pulling out; or the EU takes substantive and tangible measures to rectify what has become a farce. Over the last two years or so, the EU has been preoccupied with three primary concerns – namely Trump, Putin, and Brexit – and it has therefore put Iran and the JCPOA on the backburner. If it continues to ignore the JCPOA, it is bound to have another serious crisis on its hands.
Q: What is the reaction of President Trump administration especially aggressive wing such as person like Bolton to Iran decision?
A: I don’t think that’s the way this White House operates. Donald Trump has demonstrated a predictable pattern of behavior. This behavior is predicated on his innate distrust of and dislike for multilateralism and multilateral agreements. As a result, he has pulled the United States out of many multilateral commitments, the most notable of which are the Paris Agreement on climate change in 2016 and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the UN Human Rights Council, and the JCPOA, all in 2018. In each instance, after pulling out of the agreement, he has engaged in bombastic rhetoric, condemning the terms of the previous agreement, and calling for a new one. In the process, he has sought to apply what he believes his “art of the deal” in order to get better terms for the United States. This is precisely what we are seeing today in the current trade standoff between the U.S. and China, and what we saw in 2017 in relation to North Korea, when Trump called Kim Jung Un “the little rocket man” and warned that his “fingers are on the trigger” are ready to be pulled at any moment. His actions against Iran are driven by the same logic. Trump himself does not seem to want war – wars are, after all, bad for business. But his rhetoric is empowering the wolves around him hungry for regime change in Iran. The real question is will he be able to rein in the likes of Bolton, Pompeo, and Giuliani, or will they become the tail wagging the dog.
Q: What's the point of President Rouhani message (JCPOA is a win-win or lose-lose game) for the other side?
A: The point is clear. Abide by the terms of the agreement, or there will be serious consequences to the EU’s continued foot-dragging.
Source: Tehran Times