Iran foreign minister scrambles to China and Russian Federation to save nuclear deal

Oil could hit $100 a barrel in 2019 Bank of America

Oil could hit $100 a barrel in 2019 Bank of America

Russia believes that it is possible to discuss the future of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), commonly known as the Iranian nuclear deal, without the U.S. participation in the agreement in the light of its unilateral withdrawal, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Tuesday.

The US will re-impose sanctions on Iran and firms dealing with it could be hit, angering signatories like France. After long negotiations, Iran had agreed in July 2015 to freeze its nuclear programme in return for the lifting of punishing global sanctions.

French President Emmanuel Macron has said he wants to secure a wider deal after the US withdrawal with four pillars: limiting Iran's nuclear program in the short and the long term, restraining its ballistic missile program and curbing what the West views as its destabilising behaviour in Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Lebanon.

Media captionWhat is the Iran nuclear deal?

But he added: "If the nuclear deal is to continue, the interests of the people of Iran must be assured".

The EU insists the deal is working, pointing to repeated United Nations inspections verifying the Islamic republic's compliance with its side of the bargain, and Mogherini's spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic told AFP ahead Zarif's arrival that "we must do our utmost to preserve it".

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The deal was negotiated between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States - plus Germany.

The trip is carried out in line with the President Hassan Rouhani's directive for intensive talks on the possibility of preserving the JCPOA while the Iranian nation's interests are guaranteed.

We wonder what deal was struck by President Trump to secure their release, including what the United States offered to North Korea in exchange for their return.

Iran has threatened to resume "industrial scale" uranium enrichment "without any restrictions" if it does not get guarantees that the trade ties which have been established with Europe since the deal was signed will be maintained.

The head of the influential Revolutionary Guards, Mohammad Ali Jafari, said: "I hope recent events will lead us to end our trust in the West and the Europeans".

Major European powers sought Tuesday to keep Iran in a landmark worldwide nuclear agreement even after President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the pact and promised tough economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

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