Borrell warns against anti-IRGC decision; nuclear talks would collapse
This comes after Germany and France supported blacklisting Iran's Revolution Guard Corps last week during a meeting of the EU foreign ministers.
JCPOA signatories Germany and France support designating Iran's Revolution Guard Corps by the European Union reported the Financial Times on Monday.
The EU countries announced their support for the move in a meeting of the union's foreign ministers last week, the report added citing sources informed on the discussions.
“Yes, some member states are supporting this proposal,” said EU's Chief of Diplomacy Josep Borell in an interview for the news site.
Borell represents the EU and US in the indirect talks with Iran.
“Many would be in favor,” he added.
The European Union will draft a legal proposal on the legality of the step within the coming three weeks, said the report.
Earlier this month, the Telegraph reported that the UK is preparing to label Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps as a "terrorist" group, which Tom Tugendhat, the security minister, and Suella Braverman, the Home Secretary, are advocating for.
However, the decision is not yet finalized as legal reviews are still being studied.
"It is highly unusual for governments to designate another state’s military as a terrorist organization and support for the move underlines western capitals’ hardening stance towards the Islamic republic," noted the FT.
A French official disclosed to the media outlet that France is "interested in potentially designating certain regional divisions of the guards as terrorist entities rather than the entire institution."
Earlier, the German Foreign Ministry said the decision faces "not only political but also high legal hurdles” for a terrorist designation.
EU's foreign policy chief considered that the alleged supply of Iranian weapons to Russia was “certainly a political influence” on the bloc's policy toward Tehran.
The nuclear deal with Iran
Borell warned that in case the EU designated the IRGC as a "terrorist" organization, this would lead to the collapse of nuclear talks.
"The JCPOA is not dead but it is completely stalled," said Borrell. "You can imagine that it would be increasingly blocked if [the terrorist designation] was done by other states . . . it would make things certainly more difficult."
According to the news site, Borrell said that "if the Iranian regime is so bad . . . we have to try to avoid this kind of regime having a nuclear bomb", adding, "And I do not know another way of doing that than making the JCPOA work."
Members of the European Parliament demanded earlier this month that the EU classify the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps of Iran as a "terrorist" organization.
On the day following the classification demand, the European Parliament held a session and voted on this proposal.
Noting that the results are non-binding, the vote was approved with 598 votes in favor, 9 against, and 31 abstentions.
In response to the vote, Iranian Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi stated that the EU's decision to include the Iranian IRGC on its "terrorist list" demonstrates the Europeans' desperation and ignorance, emphasizing that the designation will not hinder the IRGC's anti-terror campaign.
Iranian Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf underlined that Iran will designate European armies as terrorists in response to the European Parliament's vote.
However, despite the EU parliament;'s decision, the actual designation can't be implemented unless a court of one of the member states does it first.
"Court rulings in non-EU countries, including the UK, are possible legal grounds but would be more complicated," reported FT, according to officials.
“Yes, we can do more [against the guards],” Borrell told the news outlet.
“But, as I told my colleagues on the council: this is in your hands. I need a national decision.”