European Union works to save unraveling nuclear agreement with Iran

European Union works to save unraveling nuclear agreement with Iran

He appeared to be reacting to a comment by Iran's foreign minister said Tehran would discuss its missile program after Washington stopped arming allies Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, something the United States is unlikely to do.

The European are still trying to put its Instex trade mechanism in place with Iran, but the Iranian mirror entity has yet to be established and should it go ahead would initially only deal in products such as pharmaceuticals and foods, which are not subject to USA sanctions.

"We want to uphold our part of the agreement", said Germany's deputy foreign minister, Michael Roth, as he arrived at the meeting.

The United States has issued statements suggesting it claimed worldwide support in effort isolate Iran, despite the other signatories of a 2015 nuclear deal calling on Washington to return to the agreement it abandoned a year ago.

She said none of the signatories to the deal considered the breaches to be significant, and so they would not be triggering its dispute mechanism which could lead to further sanctions. They have caused its oil exports to collapse and its economy to plunge into recession.

European Union ministers in Brussels also discussed INSTEX, a barter-like system allowing countries to trade with Iran and cushion it from the impact of Washington's sanctions.

An Iranian flag flutters in front the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) headquarters in Vienna, Austria, March 4, 2019.

In follow-up to that deadline, on July 7 Iran announced that it has started enriching uranium to a higher purity than the 3.67% as the Europeans missed the 60-day deadline to devise a concrete mechanism to protect the country from the USA sanctions. Low-enriched uranium provides fuel for civilian power plants.

Iran said last week it enriched uranium past the 3.67 percent limit set by the 2015 nuclear deal, and surpassed the 300-kg limit on enriched uranium reserves.

"The French authorities were recently informed of the arrest of Fariba Adelkhah", said the foreign ministry statement, which confirmed she holds dual nationality.

"Also then, there was someone who buried his head in the sand and didn't see the approaching danger", the Israeli prime minister added.

The unprecedented remarks contradict previous statements by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who on various occasions has ruled out any discussion with foreigners about Iran's ballistic missile program.

"The Middle East is already one of the most unstable regions in the world, but if the different parties were armed with nuclear weapons it would represent an existential threat to mankind".

Oil tankers previously have been targeted in the wider region amid tensions between the United States and Iran over its unraveling nuclear deal with world powers. Iran has called the allegations "ridiculous".

"We certainly have suspicions that it was taken", the official said.

But US President Donald Trump in 2018 announced Washington was pulling out of the deal, to the dismay of its European allies.

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt - who held phone talks with his U.S. and Iranian counterparts at the weekend - insisted "the deal isn't dead yet".

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