Labor backs Bishop’s call for US to continue Iran nuclear deal support
Australia’s Labor has backed Foreign Minister Julie Bishop’s urgings to the Donald Trump administration not to abandon the Iran nuclear deal as both sides of Australian politics agree it could imperil negotiations with North Korea.
“The greatest threat to regional stability and security right now is North Korea and Labor shares the foreign minister’s concerns that abandoning the Iran deal (JCPOA) risks undermining efforts to get North Korea to end its nuclear program,’’ Labor foreign affairs spokeswoman Penny Wong said, The Australian reported.
Labor, like much of the international community, supported the Iran deal with reservations, she said.
“We are concerned that walking away from the deal now would take us backward by eroding trust in the multilateral system; and increasing nuclear proliferation.’’
“Labor has not seen any concrete evidence to suggest that the deal is not producing results, or that there is a better alternative,’’ Senator Wong said.
Her comments came after Bishop was reported on Sunday as saying there was a “powerful argument” that US President Donald Trump’s threat to scrap the Obamaera Iran nuclear deal could endanger attempts to negotiate a peaceful outcome with North Korea.
In a statement to The Australian, Bishop said: Pyongyang will use any excuse to avoid signing an agreement to cease developing and giving up its weapons programs.
“If Us-iranian relations are significantly affected by congressional reconsideration of the JCPOA or of autonomous US sanctions on Iran, Pyongyang will have an incentive to toughen its view against denuclearization talks involving the US,’’ she said.