Iran FM Sets Out on Diplomatic Tour to Save Nuclear Deal

Sergei Savostyanov  TASS

Sergei Savostyanov TASS

Iran's foreign minister has held talks in China as he began a diplomatic tour with the remaining signatories of a multinational nuclear deal following the recent United States withdrawal from the landmark 2015 pact.

Mr Khamenei said that while Iranian officials "want to continue the nuclear deal" with Britain, France and Germany, he "did not trust these countries either".

Mohammad Javad Zarif will later fly to Moscow and Brussels to consult with the remaining signatories to the 2015 agreement.

The Iranian foreign minister highlighted the need for other parties to the JCPOA to provide "sufficient guarantees" that assure Tehran of being able to "reap the benefits" of the nuclear deal.

Zarif is warning the Trump administration that pulling out from the Iran nuclear deal would undermine talks with North Korea by proving that America reneges on its promises.

The Iranian top diplomat further noted that it was very important for him to start his intensive talks on the nuclear deal from China.

"The European Union has made the most demands on Iran after United States withdrawal from the nuclear deal, urging us to stay committed to the worldwide agreement", he added. Another is that Trump's decision sets U.S. Middle Eastern policy on a different course from the United States' Western European allies, who are still committed to upholding the deal.

It reiterated that Iran was preparing to resume "industrial-scale" uranium enrichment "without any restrictions" unless Europe provided solid guarantees that it could maintain trade ties despite renewed USA sanctions. They will also discuss overcoming Israeli resistance to Iran's military presence in Syria, TASS reported Monday.

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No reason was given for Tero Varjoranta's sudden departure, which comes days after Trump took the USA out of the deal between Iran and world powers over its nuclear programme.

Rowhani has said Iran would stay committed to the deal, which Britain, China, France, Germany and Russian Federation also signed, provided those powers could ensure Iran was protected from sanctions against key sectors of its economy such as oil.

China's relations with Iran could see better days ahead as the former is also in favour of inducting the latter in its Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a Eurasian security organisation which could emerge as a key anti-US bloc in times to come.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the USA nonetheless Wished to operate together with the Europeans on a new deal.

The question is whether the remaining signatories - the so-called EU-3, Russian Federation and China - can deliver the benefits of the accord, including access to global oil markets, trade and investment, that enticed the Iranians to join the agreement.

Foreign ministers from the U.K., France and Germany are due to sit down with their Iranian counterpart, Javad Zarif, in Brussels on Tuesday to discuss how to move forward.

Boris Johnson has called on Iran to stick to its nuclear agreement with the UK, France and Germany in a bid to protect companies fearful of being penalised for doing business there.

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