Tehran, Iran – The 13-year ban that was imposed on Iran by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) as part of Resolution 2231 of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), an accord signed in 2015 has expired permiting the Islamic state to legally import and export fire arms.
The 2015 JCPOA accord which gave Iran sanctions relief in exchange for curbs on its nuclear programme expires today Sunday October 18th, Iranian official said.
“A long-standing conventional arms embargo imposed on Iran has expired in line with the terms of a landmark nuclear deal between Iran and world powers,” Iranian foreign ministry noted.
He added: ”The end of the embargo means Iran will legally be able to buy and sell conventional arms, including missiles, helicopters and tanks and the country can now procure any necessary arms and equipment from any source without any legal restrictions, and solely based on its defensive needs.”
In a statement carried by state media, the Iranian foreign ministry said “as of today, all restrictions on the transfer of arms, related activities and financial services to and from the Islamic Republic of Iran … are all automatically terminated.”
However, the expiration still face opposition from the United States which in the recent past unilaterally withdrew from the JCPOA, May 2018, imposing waves of harsh economic sanctions on Iran.
US President Donald Trump’s administration has also employed every means in its power to unravel the nuclear deal and stop the lifting of the arms embargo on Iran.
At the beginning of this month, the US blacklisted 18 Iranian banks including those that process humanitarian trade transactions – effectively severing Iran’s financial sector from the global economy.
In August, the US tabled a UNSC resolution to indefinitely extend the arms embargo, but it was outrightly rejected by Russia and China while the E3 states of France, German and United Kingdom, and eight other member states of the 14 UNSC abstained. Only the Dominican Republic supported the resolution.
Also in September, the US announced it has unilaterally reinstated all UN sanctions on Iran that were lifted as part of Resolution 2231.
UNSC member states once more rejected the bid, saying the process to reinstate sanctions had no legal basis.
The US threatened “consequences” for countries that do not adhere to its assertion arguing that lifting of the embargo will open a floodgate of arms deals that would quickly serve to further destabilize the region.