European Union sets out to salvage Iran nuclear deal

Reimposition of sanctions may even make Iran offer oil on favourable terms to India. Illustration Jayachandran  Mint

When Trump announced last week that he is withdrawing the US from its 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, he described it as an easy decision: "When I make promises, I keep them".

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Washington still wants to work with its European partners on an agreement to counter Iran's "malign behavior" Sunday despite its withdrawal from a landmark nuclear deal.

Area readers have split feelings on whether the USA should have violated a 2015 agreement with Iran and other nations to prevent Iran from pursuing a nuclear weapons program, according to a Free Press online question. "Will soon determine how P4+1 can guarantee Iran's benefits under the JCPOA, and preserve this unique achievement of diplomacy".

Siemens says delivery of three gas turbines to Iran is still pending, but its business with the country represents a "very small portion" of overall revenue. "A lot depends on what we can do within the next few weeks".

Highlighting just how hard it will be, the U.S. Treasury announced on Tuesday more sanctions, including on Iran's central bank governor, just minutes before the Brussels meeting was due to begin.

In the wake of the US President's controversial decision, Mr Johnson told the House of Commons that Britain "has no intention of walking away" from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). In the 1990s, significant disagreements surfaced when Washington adopted legislation - including the Iran and Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA) - which punished European firms for doing business in those countries. The stumbling block was the "sunset" clauses, which would allow Iran to resume fissile material enhancement within a decade.

"When it comes to the danger of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East, there is no sign Iran or any of the other major powers in the existing and so far successful pact will simply fall in line" with Trump's plan. "I'm not the national security decision maker", Bolton said, adding that Trump "makes the decision and the advice that I give him is between us".

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According to deal supporters, Iran has majestically lived up to every promise.

Russian Acting Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Tuesday it was possible to discuss the future of the Iran nuclear deal without the participation of the United States, Reuters with reference to the RIA news agency reported.

Concern - and anger - is growing among European governments at the uncertainty facing companies with investments in Iran. But the reach of the US financial system, the dominance of the dollar and the presence of European companies' operations in the United States all weaken any potential EU measures.

Conservative hardliners in Iran's parliament have set out conditions for the country's upcoming talks with 3 European nations over the nuclear deal. It is no surprise, then, that President Trump's decision to restore nuclear sanctions and terminate America's adherence to the JCPOA risks putting Washington on a collision course with Europe.

When asked if this would mean sanctions against firms, the adviser didn't deny the possibility. Johnson said regime change in Iran was not a policy Britain should pursue.

At the same time, the European diplomats wanted to show they weren't gullible and wouldn't drop other divisive issues with Tehran, including its role in the Syria conflict. If it falls apart, he could become politically vulnerable for promoting the accord.

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