President Donald Trump’s decision to back out of the Iran nuclear deal, called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), was met with dismay from almost the entire world except two countries — Israel and Saudi Arabia.
The multilateral deal was signed in 2015 with the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Germany, all of whom tried to convince Trump to abide by the deal, but to no avail.
While the rest of the world denounced Trump’s decision to back out of the deal, which may bring consequences that the president has so vehemently tried to avoid with North Korea, two Trump allies hailed his decision as “bold.”
Israel fully supports @realDonaldTrump’s bold decision today to reject the disastrous nuclear deal with the terrorist regime in Tehran. The deal didn’t push war further away; it actually brought it closer. The deal didn’t reduce Iran’s aggression; it dramatically increased it. pic.twitter.com/sxJHocLqu7— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) May 8, 2018
Saudi Arabia, along with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, also congratulated and praised Trump for the move.
“The kingdom supports and welcomes the steps announced by the U.S. president towards withdrawing from the nuclear deal… and reinstating economic sanctions against Iran,” read the Saudi Arabian foreign ministry’s statement.
It is important to note both the countries congratulating Trump’s “victory” consider Iran to be their fiercest regional rival. In fact, Saudi Arabia even launched a military invasion in 2015 just to counter suspected Iranian influence rebels in Yemen.
The rest of the world, however, does not share the same view.
Top European diplomat Federica Mogherini released a statement sharing her fears over Trump’s decision to impose heavy duty sanctions on Iran. She said she hoped the U.S. would reconsider their stance on the deal.
She also reiterated that since the deal is multilateral, Trump alone cannot determine its future.
“As we have always said, the nuclear deal is not a bilateral agreement and it is not in the hands of any single country to terminate it unilaterally. It has been unanimously endorsed by U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231….The nuclear deal with Iran is crucial for the security of the region, of Europe and of the entire world,” the statement read.
In a last ditch attempt to convince Trump to certify the Iran deal, French president Emmanuel Macron visited the White House along with his wife. After Trump pulled from the deal, Macron took to Twitter to share his regret.
France, Germany, and the UK regret the U.S. decision to leave the JCPOA. The nuclear non-proliferation regime is at stake.— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) May 8, 2018
"The American logic is an isolationist, protectionist and unilateral logic," seethed France's Foreign Secretary Jean-Yves Le Drian.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel also pledged to keep abiding by the deal.
“I think yesterday showed us that we in Europe will have to take more responsibility,” she said, adding, “Germany, France and the U.K. have decided that we will abide by the agreement, and we will do everything we can to see that Iran also abides by its responsibilities in the future.”
The U.K.’s Middle East minister Alistair Burt said his country was disappointed with Trump’s decision.
Britain’s Foreign Affairs Secretary Boris Johnson tweeted the British government will work to maintain the deal.
Deeply regret US decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. UK remains strongly committed to the JCPoA, and will work with E3 partners and the other parties to the deal to maintain it. Await more detail on US plan.— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) May 8, 2018
Even China, the country which stands to benefit the most from the U.S. withdrawal, does not approve of Trump’s decision.
China’s special envoy to the Middle East Gong Xiaosheng said, “Having a deal is better than no deal. Dialogue is better than confrontation.”
Russia accused Trump of “trampling on the norms of international law.”
Iran, who will be subjected to the strictest sanctions ever put on a country by Trump, fiercely rejected the POTUS’ announcement. President Hassan Rouhani called the decision “psychological warfare” while lawmakers burned American flags on the parliament floor.
Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif tweeted orders from his president after the announcement.
In response to US persistent violations & unlawful withdrawal from the nuclear deal, as instructed by President Rouhani, I'll spearhead a diplomatic effort to examine whether remaining JCPOA participants can ensure its full benefits for Iran. Outcome will determine our response.— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) May 8, 2018
Other countries, which are not part of the nuclear deal, have also expressed regret over the United States’ decision.
“We do regret the U.S. pulling out of the Iran deal, we believe it was the best option to maintain the ability to verify Iran’s compliance with its commitments on nuclear development,” said Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Turkey’s foreign ministry also released a statement, calling for all parties to resolve issue through diplomacy rather than confrontation.
“Turkey has always defended the stance that issues regarding Iran’s nuclear program should be resolved through diplomacy and negotiations and has made intensive efforts in this direction. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) accepted in 2015 was an important step taken to prevent proliferation. The plan in question has shown that even the most difficult of subjects could be resolved through negotiations,” the statement read.
With the rest of the world is in disarray over Trump's decision, the step may isolate America from the rest of the world and, with the responses pouring in over Trump’s announcement, it sure seems that way.
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst