China says U.S. unilateral withdrawal from JCPOA is root cause of tensions
Updated 18:08, 09-Jan-2020

China says the unilateral withdrawal in 2018 of the United States from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), known widely as the Iran nuclear deal, is the root cause of the rising tensions on Iran nuclear issue.

Spokesman Geng Shuang made the remarks at Thursday's news briefing when asked for comments about the U.S. President Donald Trump's address earlier during which the president called for relevant parties to abandon the deal and reach a new one.

"The JCPOA is an important achievement of multilateral diplomacy which was approved by the UN Security Council, and it is also an important support for peace and stability in the Middle East," Geng said, adding that the deal is also the cornerstone of the global nuclear non-proliferation system.

"The global society should firmly maintain the deal and cool off the tensions in the Gulf," he said.

China will continue to play a constructive role in maintaining peace and security in the Middle East and the Gulf region, Geng added.

As for Trump's promise of new economic sanctions on Tehran in his televised address, the spokesman stressed that China maintains that all parties should earnestly abide by the purposes of the UN Charter and the basic norms governing international relations, and settle differences through dialogue and consultation.

"China has been and will always be a builder, promoter and contributor for the peace, stability and development in the Middle East, no matter during the past or in the future," the spokesman noted.