Iran says US nuclear policy brings world 'closer to annihilation'

(iStock)
(iStock)

Tehran - The United States' new nuclear policy brings humanity "closer to annihilation", Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has said.

His comments late on Saturday came a day after the Pentagon revealed plans to revamp its nuclear arsenal, largely in response to a perceived renewed threat from Russia.

Zarif said the new policy was "in violation" of the international Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

"The US Nuclear Posture Review reflects greater reliance on nukes in violation of the #NPT, bringing humankind closer to annihilation," Zarif said on Twitter.

Zarif said the same impulse was driving the United States to undermine the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, which President Donald Trump has demanded be renegotiated.

"Trump's obduracy in killing the #JCPOA stems from the same dangerous imprudence," Zarif wrote, using the technical name for the nuclear deal.

Deterrent 

The latest Nuclear Posture Review published by the Pentagon called for a larger arsenal of smaller, low-yield nuclear weapons to act as a more "credible" deterrent to threats, particularly from Russia.

The NPT, which came into force in 1970 and has been signed by almost all countries including the United States, calls on nations "to achieve at the earliest possible date the cessation of the nuclear arms race and to undertake measures in the direction of nuclear disarmament".

Iran's nuclear deal, reached with six world powers, lifted some international sanctions in exchange for curbs to its nuclear programme.

Trump has consistently attacked the accord and said in January he would not continue to waive sanctions unless new restrictions were placed on Iran's missile programme and wider actions in the Middle East.

The other parties - Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China - as well as the European Union have strongly defended the deal, saying it has achieved its aim of limiting Iran's ability to build a nuclear weapon.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Who do you think is going to win the 2020 US election?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Biden is going to take it
47% - 10298 votes
It's four more years for Trump
53% - 11518 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
16.39
(-0.33)
ZAR/GBP
21.19
(+0.32)
ZAR/EUR
19.14
(+0.48)
ZAR/AUD
11.52
(+0.22)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.13)
Gold
1866.00
(-0.69)
Silver
23.20
(-0.88)
Platinum
848.00
(-2.47)
Brent Crude
39.48
(-4.73)
Palladium
2195.50
(-2.58)
All Share
51896.97
(-0.79)
Top 40
47576.46
(-0.74)
Financial 15
9756.70
(-2.69)
Industrial 25
72681.12
(-0.25)
Resource 10
47826.96
(-0.63)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo