The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is a multilateral agreement signed in July 2015 between Iran and P5+1 (France, United States, United Kingdom, Russia, China plus Germany) which limited Iran’s capability to develop nuclear weapons. The JCPOA agreement limits Iran’s nuclear ambitions and allows relief from economic sanctions that it had faced for over a decade. However, it was not long before the deal hit a snag.
On May 8, 2018, US President Donald Trump announced his unilateral decision to pull America out of the JCPOA deal that he dubbed as ‘disastrous’. The decision shocked the world as it came in spite of concerted European efforts to persuade US to stay. After almost a year of US departure, the JCPOA seems to hang by a thread which draws strength only from Europe’s urging of Iran to keep honoring the terms of the multilateral agreement. These labors have borne fruit so far as to keep Iran’s compliance to the JCPOA although the country faces severe economic pressure of US sanctions that were re-imposed in August 2018 designed to bring about Iran’s complete financial isolation. In a recent statement to the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) Board of Governors, Director General Yukiya Amano reiterated, “Based on the report on verification and monitoring in Iran in light of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231, Iran is implementing its nuclear-related commitments under the nuclear accord.”