In 2015, Iran signed the JCPOA with China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany and the European Union, requiring Iran to scale back its nuclear program and severely downgrade its uranium reserves in exchange for sanctions relief, including lifting the arms embargo five years after the deal’s adoption.
“As of today, all restrictions on the transfer of arms, related activities and financial services to and from The Islamic Republic of Iran, and all prohibitions regarding the entry or transit through territories of the United Nations Member States previously imposed on a number of Iranian citizens and military officials, are all automatically terminated,” the Foreign Ministry of the Islamic Republic of Iran stated.
A momentous day for the international community, which— in defiance of malign US efforts—has protected UNSC Res. 2231 and JCPOA.
Today's normalization of Iran’s defense cooperation with the world is a win for the cause of multilateralism and peace and security in our region. pic.twitter.com/sRO6ezu4OO
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) October 17, 2020
No special action was necessary from Iran’s side as the embargo lifts automatically if no extension or additional measures are taken by the Security Council, the statement read.
Tehran said this gives authorities free reign to undertake new defense policy based solely on its own decisions.
“Therefore, as of today, the Islamic Republic of Iran may procure any necessary arms and equipment from any source without any legal restrictions and solely based on its defensive needs, and may also export defensive armaments based on its own policies,” the statement read.
In 2018, the United States abandoned its conciliatory position on Iran and withdrew from the JCPOA, beginning to pursue a tough policy towards Tehran.
Earlier this year, the US tried to campaign for the restoration of international sanctions against Iran, in particular for the extension of the arms embargo, but all its draft resolutions were eventually rejected.