On April 18, the G7 countries and the European Union criticized Iran’s “unabated escalation” of its nuclear program and proliferation of weapons to militant proxies, Russia and others. The world’s most advanced economies also called on the Iranian government to end its crackdown on protesters, women, girls, minorities, and journalists. “We strongly reject Iran’s targeting of dual and foreign citizens, and call on Iran’s leadership to end all unjust and arbitrary detentions,” added the G7 – including Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States – and the European Union.
Tehran decried the G7 statement as “baseless and meddlesome.” The countries had “leveled unfounded allegations against Iran’s peaceful nuclear program.” Iran also called on the G7 to “adopt a realistic approach based on mutual respect.” The following is the statement by the G7 foreign ministers and E.U. high representative issued after a meeting in Japan.
G7 Foreign Ministers’ Communiqué
“We reiterate our clear determination that Iran must never develop a nuclear weapon, and urge Iran to cease nuclear escalations. We call on Iran to fulfill its legal obligations and political commitments regarding nuclear non-proliferation without further delay. We remain deeply concerned about Iran’s unabated escalation of its nuclear program, which has no credible civilian justification and brings it dangerously close to actual weapon-related activities. We recall recent sampling by the IAEA which found particles of uranium highly enriched to 83.7 percent. A diplomatic solution remains our preferred way to resolve international concerns regarding Iran’s nuclear program. In that context, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action continues to provide a useful reference. We take note of Iran’s stated readiness to provide the IAEA with further information and access to address the outstanding safeguards issues, and its agreement to allow the IAEA to implement further appropriate verification and monitoring activities. We call on Iran to uphold its safeguards obligations and stated commitments with prompt and concrete action.
“We express our grave concern regarding Iran’s continued destabilizing activities, including the transfer of missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and related technologies to state and non-state actors and proxy groups in breach of UNSCRs including 2231 and 2216. Iran must stop supporting the Russian military in its war of aggression. In particular, we call upon Iran to cease transferring armed UAVs, which have been used in Ukraine. Indiscriminate attacks against civilians and critical civilian infrastructure constitute war crimes. We reiterate our conviction that the transfer of ballistic missiles would represent a major escalation. We welcome initiatives to improve bilateral relations among countries and de-escalate tensions in the region, including Iran and Saudi Arabia’s recent agreement to restore ties. Furthermore, we emphasize the importance of ensuring maritime security in the Middle East’s waterways, including through the Strait of Hormuz and the Bab al Mandab, and call on Iran not to interfere with the lawful exercise of navigational rights and freedoms by all vessels.
“We reiterate our profound concern over Iran’s systemic human rights violations and abuses, especially with Iran’s efforts to oppress peaceful dissent through threats and intimidation. We condemn the targeting of individuals, including women, girls, minority groups, as well as journalists, in and outside of Iran. We call on Iran to take concrete action to address these issues. We strongly reject Iran’s targeting of dual and foreign citizens, and call on Iran’s leadership to end all unjust and arbitrary detentions.”