Iran rules out talks on ballistic missiles, regional tensions

2 years ago | 19

IRAN on Friday said it would rule out discussions on ballistic missile and regional tensions but will only discuss the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers. This was after French President Emmanuel Macron suggested talks on reining in Tehran’s ballistic missiles programme and “regional activities.’’ “Topics outside of the nuclear deal are irrelevant and will not help the deal,’’ Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said on Friday in comments reported by state-run news agency IRNA. “Such statements cannot hide the fact that after the U.S.’ departure from the deal, the Europeans are not in a position to implement the nuclear deal,’’ he added. Discussing anything else would “only serve to help the U.S. come closer to its goal, (that of the collapse of the nuclear deal),’’ he said. Iranian President Hassan Rowhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif have also previously stated that Tehran would only be willing to expand talks when the 2015 agreement is re-implemented and U.S. sanctions lifted. Macron made his proposal on Thursday during a news conference with U.S. President Donald Trump in France, at which he insisted their countries shared the same objectives on Tehran. But the unilateral U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear agreement in 2018 and the tightening of sanctions on Iran’s oil and banking sectors massively increasing the economic pressure on Tehran placed European countries, which want to uphold the deal, in a bind. In May Rowhani, gave an ultimatum that Iran would begin enriching uranium again unless sanctions were lifted within 60 days. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas plans to travel to Tehran on Monday in a bid to keep the deal alive. BE – June 7, 2019 @ 15:55 GMT |  

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