02/26/2019, 09.38
IRAN
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Iran’s Foreign Minister, author of the nuclear agreement, has resigned

Mohammad Javad Zarif posts announcement on his Instagram profile. He apologized for "not being able to continue" with the assignment and for "all my failings." Yesterday he did not attend the surprise visit of Syrian President Assad in Iran, the latest tensions with the International Financial Action Group .

Teheran (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Mohammad Javad Zarif, head of Tehran’s diplomacy and great architect of the 2015 nuclear agreement (JCPOA), has resigned, then disqualified by the current US administration, which has ordered the introduction of the harshest penalties history. In a post published yesterday on his Instagram profile, the now former Iranian Foreign Minister has apologized "for not being able to continue" the task and "for all my shortcomings, in the exercise of my duties ".

Official sources have confirmed the resignation of the 59-year-old diplomat, with studies in the United States behind him and a doctorate in international law at the University of Denver. Iranian President Hassan Rohani would have accepted the choice of his former minister; now the word passes to the supreme guide, the Ayatollah Khamenei, who has the last word on the government posts.

Zarif led Tehran's foreign policy during the first term of the moderate Rouhani, from 2013 to 2017 and was confirmed in the post after the victory for a second round. "I am very grateful to the Iranian people - added the diplomat - and to our respectable leaders, for the magnanimity they have shown during these 76 months".

He led the negotiations on the Iranian side that led to the signing of the historic agreement of 2015 between the Islamic Republic and the 5 + 1 Group (China, United States, France, Great Britain, Russia and Germany), which put an end to 12 years of crisis on the nuclear issue.

On the domestic front, Zarif is considered a real black beast for the ultraconservatives who in recent months have stepped up their criticism. Personal attacks have increased exponentially following the choice of the current US president Donald Trump to withdraw unilaterally from the agreement, which remains in force for Europe and the rest of the international community.

The announcement of the resignation also came within hours of a surprise visit to Tehran by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who met yesterday Khamenei and Rouhani. According to the official agency Isna, Zarif was not present at either event.

On 24 February, the former minister criticized the decision by the International Financial Action Task Force (IFATF) to impose a deadline on Iran (by June) to comply with international standards against money laundering and terrorist financing.

The adoption of the legislative measures for which Tehran has committed itself to the IFATF - essential for the functioning of the mechanism of trade with the EU - are the subject of a tug of war between the government and the Parliament on the one hand and the organs of control of the political system on the other.

The latter, however, are in the hands of ultraconservatives and represent an obstacle to the reformist and modernizing initiatives of Rouhani.

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