Russia Rejects Immediate Sanctions ‘Snap-Back’ Should Iran Break Nuclear Deal
The Russian U.N. ambassador flatly rejected any automatic reimposition of sanctions against Iran should it cheat on a future nuclear deal, which is crucial to how the Obama administration has been trying to sell the agreement ahead of the June 30 deadline.
Speaking to Bloomberg, Russian Ambassador to the U.N. Vitaly Churkin said “there can be no automaticity, none whatsoever” in punishing Iran should it be found violating the nuclear deal.
The Russian comments came as top Obama administration officials insisted this week that the nuclear deal would include provisions ensuring a multilateral “snap-back” mechanism for sanctions.
The Obama administration highlighted the snap-back mechanism shortly after negotiators announced a framework agreement in Lausanne, Switzerland last month, to allay the fears of those critical of the nuclear deal.
“If Iran violates the deal, sanctions can be snapped back into place,” President Barack Obama said on April 2.
But such a multilateral snap-back mechanism would perforce have to bypass the U.N. Security Council, where Russia holds veto power, which helps explain Russian skepticism concerning such measures.
Earlier this week, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and said it was important that the two countries were “closely aligned” regarding Iran policy.
Earlier, Russia drew the ire of U.S. officials when it announced the end of a five-year ban and its sale of the S-300 missile defense system to Iran, shortly after the Lausanne talks ended.