Russia, Iran discuss nuclear deal after U.S. withdrawal

Posted May 15, 2018

"We have started an intensive process (and) the economic benefits inside the JCPOA (Iran deal) should be preserved for Iran", Mohammad Javad Zarif said on arrival in Brussels ahead of a meeting with his British, French and German counterparts.

"This was an agreement which was deliberately kept narrow to deal with Iran's nuclear program".

The nations that were hyper critical for the United States on its decision to break away from the 2015 deal had their economic interests at heart rather than the virtues of the deal.

"We will look at potential options for supporting continued sanctions relief for Iran to ensure we meet our commitments under the deal, as well as calling on Iran to continue to abide by the restrictions the deal places upon their nuclear program", he said.

"It is not the matter of Iran's nuclear deal, it is the matter of dignity of Europe because President Trump believes in unilateralism; he thinks he's master of the world, he's a business police of the world and he will make a decision and the other countries must obey him", Mr Mianji said.

According to Zarif, the goal of his trip is to get guarantees from the other participants of the nuclear deal that the interests of Iran will be protected.

The deal's proponents say it is crucial to forestalling a nuclear Iran and preventing wider war in the Middle East.

White House National Security Advisor John Bolton looks on as U.S. President Donald Trump holds a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington, U.S. May 9, 2018.

The EU's energy commissioner is also traveling this week to Iran to discuss strengthening European energy support to Iran.

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Tehran has warned it is preparing to resume "industrial-scale" uranium enrichment "without any restrictions" unless Europe can provide solid guarantees that it can maintain the economic benefits it gained from the nuclear agreement despite the USA reimposing sanctions.

Meanwhile, European diplomats in Tehran fumed that Trump's decision to withdraw from the nuclear deal could undermine years of patient work to restore commercial and diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic.

"[New Zealand companies] will lose in this sanction, we can buy, for example butter, from many other countries, that is why it is not in favour of New Zealand, it will not serve the New Zealand companies' interests".

After China, the Iranian foreign minister was scheduled to fly to Moscow for talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov and then Brussels to consult with British, French and German foreign ministers as well as European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini.

But European diplomats have sought to play down expectations of Tuesday's meeting, stressing the enormous challenge of finding a way around U.S. sanctions punishing foreign businesses trading with Iran, which have global reach.

Representatives in the industry had already expressed their concern about difficulties exporting to Iran, the minister said.

Major European powers sought Tuesday to keep Iran in a landmark global nuclear agreement after President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the pact and promised tough economic sanctions against Tehran.

This article has been adapted from its original source.

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