China on Wednesday argued that the signatories to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or Iran nuclear deal, should uphold the nuclear agreement amid threats by American President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to kill the deal.
“What is pressing now is that all relevant parties should bear in mind the large picture and long-term interest, and faithfully implement and uphold,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told reporters Wednesday, according to Iran’s state-run Press TV.
According to the Associated Press, Hua said that the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has certified on ten separate occasions that Iran is honoring the nuclear agreement signed in 2015 and that strict inspection measures are in place to ensure compliance.
China has reportedly sought the strengthening of its military posture in the Middle East and Beijing has begun pursuing deeper cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Iran.
As U.S. sanctions on Iran have sought – unsuccessfully – to keep western businesses out of Iran, China seized on the opportunity to expand its own operations.
“The more the U.S. puts pressure on Iran, the closer Iran will get to China,” Foad Izadi, an assistant professor in the Department of North American Studies at the University of Tehran, told USA Today in an interview last year.
On Wednesday, Hua reportedly added that the IAEA is the only international body with the right to supervise the deal and make judgments about it.
The IAEA and international inspectors are prohibited from visiting the Parchin military site which was previously used for nuclear research.
Breitbart reported in 2015: “Another outstanding issue which has ended without being clearly resolved is Iran’s nuclear research at Parchin. The IAEA says a large explosive firing chamber suitable for nuclear research was installed at Parchin.”
On Monday, Prime Minister Netanyahu delivered a slideshow presentation detailing Israel’s findings on Iran’s allegedly ongoing nuclear weapons program, which the country has denied.
Netanyahu revealed that Israeli intelligence had “obtained a ton of material” from a “highly secret location” in Iran’s Shorabad district of Tehran that housed archives of information for Iran’s nuclear weapons program. “From the outside, this was an innocent looking compound,” Netanyahu explained. “It looks like a dilapidated warehouse, but from the inside, it contained Iran’s secret atomic archives locked in massive files.”
He added, “Few Iranians knew where it was. Very few, and also a few Israelis.”
Shortly after Netanyahu’s announcement, President Donald Trump declared that he has been “100 percent right” on Iran’s alleged nuclear development.