Iranian Foreign Minister Discusses Nuclear Deal with Russian Federation

Europe isn't US'vassal' wants to uphold Iran nuclear deal

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The situation around the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program is a crisis, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said opening talks with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif on Monday, TASS reports.

Several Irish firms began trading with Iran, the Middle East's second-largest economy, in the wake of the 2015 deal to control Tehran's nuclear ambitions, which led to the lifting of long-standing worldwide sanctions and the resumption of formal trade ties with several European countries.

Trump has said the U.S. would be reinstating the anti-Iran bans lifted under the JCPOA and also slapping the "highest level" of economic sanctions on Tehran, prompting anger among other parties to the Iran deal, which unanimously denounced Washington and vowed to stay committed to their side of the deal.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has said Tehran will stay committed to the deal, which China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany also signed, provided those powers ensured Iran was protected from sanctions.

"I think you have to start first with the fundamental deficiencies of the deal itself", Bolton said.

She said there would be "protection of European Union economic operators and ... last but not least, the further development of a transparent, rules-based business environment in Iran".

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

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that "it won't be easy, that's clear to all of us".

Both the European Union and Iran have vowed to keep implementing the deal, despite the threat of U.S. sanctions after Trump's decision to withdraw.

Minister for trade and export David Parker last week said it was still unclear to the nations who remained in the nuclear agreement what exports or trade were at risk when associating with Iran.

Indonesian family that bombed churches well off, friendly
The attack came just hours after police said the family that carried out the church bombings included girls aged 8 and 12. The three families are believed to members of the pro-Isis Indonesian militant group, Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD).

But European diplomats have sought to play down expectations of Tuesday's meetings, stressing the enormous challenge of finding a way around United States sanctions punishing foreign businesses trading with Iran, which have global reach.

Tehran is being given assurances that European governments will seek to protect companies doing business in Iran from renewed U.S. sanctions, as foreign ministers prepare to meet in Brussels to salvage the nuclear deal.

On May 8, President Donald Trump violated the terms of the JCPOA by withdrawing from the accord.

Regular inspections have found Iran to be fully compliant with the restrictions imposed on its nuclear programme, which Iran insists was always peaceful.

After long negotiations, Iran had agreed in July 2015 to freeze its nuclear programme in return for the lifting of punishing global sanctions.

Another possibility raised by Le Maire is a European version of U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which administers and enforces economic and trade sanctions.

So far, China, France, Russia, Britain, the European Union and Iran remain in the accord, which placed controls on Iran's nuclear program and led to a relaxation of United States economic sanctions against Iran and companies doing business there.

German exports to Iran totalled almost €3bn (£2.6bn) in 2017, while French exports soared from €562m in 2015 to €1.5bn in 2017.

"We have to be realistic about the electrified rail, the live wire of American extraterritoriality and how [it] can serve as a deterrent to business", Johnson told reporters in Brussels.

They include retaliatory sanctions, allowing the European Investment Bank to invest directly in Iran and coordinating euro-denominated credit lines from European governments.

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