Iran, EU top diplomat meet seeking to save nuclear deal

Iran, EU top diplomat meet seeking to save nuclear deal

Iran, EU top diplomat meet seeking to save nuclear deal

The United States threatened on Sunday to impose sanctions on European companies that do business with Iran, as the remaining participants in the Iran nuclear accord stiffened their resolve to keep that agreement operational.

Days after US President Donald J. Trump announced that he would buck worldwide protocol and unilaterally pull the United States out of a landmark deal that helped curb Iran's nuclear weapons programme, the European Union has been forced to ponder how it will respond to a threat issued by Trump's White House on May 13 that Washington would impose stiff economic sanctions on European companies that continue to do business with Tehran.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, speaking in Dublin, declared: "We are stakeholders" and will remain so.

Trump and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believe they fueled the argument for a USA withdrawal this week after Israel unveiled a cache of Iran's nuclear-weapons files, obtained in a Mossad raid in Tehran earlier this year.

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In statements prior to his decision to withdraw from the agreement and to re-impose crippling economic sanctions on Iran, Trump said he had no intention of changing course on a campaign promise that he made almost two years ago when he pledged to reverse his predecessor Barack Obama's landmark accord with Tehran.

He was due to hold talks later in Brussels with the foreign ministers of Britain, France and Germany.

Asked whether the United States might impose sanctions on European companies that continue to do business with Iran, Bolton told CNN: "It's possible".

In an interview over the weekend, Senator Graham said the Iranian deal poses a threat to regional stability in the Middle East.

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The US withdrawal from the Iran deal has upset Washington's European allies, cast uncertainty over global oil supplies and raised the risk of conflict in the Middle East. They name terms - 60 days, 90 days.

Israel and Iran engaged in an extensive military exchange on the heels of Trump's decision to leave the deal. "Let me make it absolutely clear, and once and for all: we will neither outsource our security nor will we renegotiate or add onto a deal we have already implemented in good faith".

The files - declared "authentic" by the USA government - document Iran's extensive work on nuclear weapons, including planned site tests, miniaturization of warheads and ballistic missile delivery vehicles.

This, along with its diplomatic moves to orchestrate an end to the Syrian conflict, has put Moscow at loggerheads with the U.S. and Europe, which have intervened against the regime.

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