Sunday, 18 November, 2018

With US out, those backing Iran nuclear deal meet in Vienna

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Ray Hunter | 07 July, 2018, 04:02

In May, US President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal under which sanctions on Iran were lifted in return for curbs to its nuclear program. Washington has since told countries they must stop buying the OPEC producer's oil from November 4 or face financial consequences.

Trump in May slammed the nuclear accord signed under his predecessor Barack Obama as "horrible" and "defective at its core", earning applause from Iran's regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Javad Zarif (C) and political deputy at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iran Abbas Araghchi take part in a Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) ministerial meeting on the Iran nuclear deal on July 6, 2018 in Vienna, Austria.

They said they remained committed to the 2015 accord and to building up economic relations with Iran, including "the continuation of Iran's export of oil and gas" and other energy products.

Speaking at a joint press conference with his Swiss counterpart, Alain Berset, in Bern on Tuesday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani lashed out at American officials for threatening to stop Iran's oil exports, saying they would never be able to carry out such a threat.

The model set as revolutionary thinking with reliance on people, was in fact the foundation of pillars of sacred defense of the Iranian people in the geography of Islamic resistance, bringing historical triumphs against the Takfiri terrorists and proxy wars, he said.

Kawhi Leonard committed to playing for Lakers after LeBron signing
James dearly missed Irving's shot-making and firepower in the 2018 Finals, as Cleveland's point guard corps was an utter mess. The three-time National Basketball Association champion and best player in the world has not been a free agent in four years.

Tehran has conditioned its stay in the deal to practical European strides to make sure Iran's dividends from the deal would not be affected when USA sanctions "snap back" in August.

Speaking after three hours of talks, European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, who chaired the talks, read a statement from the six delegations repeating previously-announced broad priorities ranging from guaranteeing Iranian oil revenue to shipping ties, banking and all other trade and investment co-operation.

In another phone conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron late on Thursday, Rouhani described Paris' efforts to save the nuclear deal as "positive" but noted that "Europe's proposed package for keeping up cooperation in the JCPOA does not meet all our expectations". "To save the deal, other signatories should compensate for United States sanctions", a senior Iranian official told Reuters on Friday.

Meanwhile, Iran's representative to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, or OPEC, blamed Trump for rising oil prices, claiming that the president's rhetoric could force oil prices to rise to $100 per barrel.

"After the withdrawal of the United States, which we can't understand, we face a hard situation", he added, but he stressed that "we want to make clear to Iran that it will still gain economic benefits through this agreement".

Rouhani warned on Wednesday that Iran could reduce its co-operation with the United Nations nuclear watchdog if the deal collapses. He added that the commission needs to develop ways keep commercial and economic ties between Iran and other parties to the agreement, which "would not depend on the U.S. whims".

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