Iran says nuclear deal talks with European Union 'constructive'

Iran says nuclear deal talks with European Union 'constructive'

Part of the flaw with the Iran deal that President Donald Trump rejected was it enticed Europe and the US into economic relations with Iran that would work against holding the country accountable for violations of the agreement, Bolton said.

Pompeo said he was "hopeful in the days and weeks ahead we can come up with a deal that really works, that really protects the world from Iranian bad behavior, not just their nuclear program, but their missiles and their malign behavior as well". Quite the contrary, it provided cover for Iran to continue its efforts.

He was due to hold talks later in Brussels with the foreign ministers of Britain, France, and Germany. The U.S. wanted to reimpose sanctions if Iran began to expand its capacity to enrich uranium at that point.

"Do we accept extraterritorial sanctions?"

"Officials shouldn't trust France and Britain".

Mohammad Ali Jafari, head of the Revolutionary Guards, said the country could not rely on the West.

"It is a trade-off and a sensible trade-off and... it is the only really workable way we can see to stop Iran getting a nuclear weapon. Much depends on the politicians' will, chiefly in the European countries".

German exports to Iran totaled almost 3 billion euros ($2.3 billion) in 2017, while French exports soared from 562 million euros ($670 million) in 2015 to 1.5 billion ($1.8 billion) in 2017 and oil giant Total has pledged to invest some $5 billion in the South Pars gas field. Around 120 German firms have operations with their own staff in Iran, including industrial giant Siemens, and some 10,000 other German companies trade with Iran. Pertinently, North Korea believes it can at least rely on China as a buffer against potential US aggression; Iran does not have a similar faith in Europe.

"Our position is one of determination and unity, of will to keep this agreement alive", Le Drian said. "That means, it is concretely about damage limitation". No U.S. government money would be provided to North Korea. He was quoted by Germany's Bild newspaper as saying firms should question the morality of doing business with Iran.

France's foreign minister said Friday he had asked for exemptions or longer grace periods for the exit of French companies such as oil-and-gas giant Total SA and auto maker Peugeot SA that have returned to the Iranian market since the 2015 nuclear accord. "Do they want to do business with a threat?" he asked.

"We are waiting now for how the decision-makers in the European Union will react". Citing data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, the newspaper explained that Iranian military spending has increased by only about 30 percent from 2015, the year the Iran deal was reached, to last year.

Meanwhile, Russia moved on May 10 to accelerate planned economic ties with Iran.

Trump wants global inspectors to have greater and faster access to potential nuclear sites in Iran, including those suspected to be housed in its military facilities; an end to its ballistic missile work, which it says is inextricably tied to the delivery of nuclear warheads; a permanent extension of limits on Iran's enrichment of fissile material, which now sunsets within a decade; and a comprehensive policy addressing Tehran's military posture across the Middle East.

The grouping includes Kazakhstan, Belarus, Armenia, and Kyrgyzstan.

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