Europe To Keep Iran Deal Intact As US Sanctions Come Into Effect

Top diplomats from Europe have vowed to unite and work together to keep the multinational nuclear deal with Iran intact without any changes to be made in it amid the issue of US President Donald Trump signed an executive order allowing for the return of biting sanctions against Tehran on Tuesday.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and the foreign ministers from France, Germany and Britain issued a joint statement on Monday. They all said that the remaining parties to the 2015 agreement will maintain “effective financial channels” with Iran and ensure its continued export of oil and gas.

“We deeply regret the re-imposition of sanctions by the US, due to the latter’s withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA),” the statement said, referring to Trump’s decision in May.

Newly ordered US sanctions on Iran are slated to come into effect from Tuesday

“Preserving the nuclear deal with Iran is a matter of respecting international agreements and a matter of international security,” the statement added.

In a recently issued statement on Monday, the White House said the first round of sanctions will be reimposed as on August 7, followed by a second one to be imposed on November 5.

“President Trump will continue to stand up to the Iranian regime’s aggression, and the United States will fully enforce the reimposed sanctions,” it said.

It issued a strict warning that those who “fail” to abide by the US sanctions against Iran will “risk severe consequences”.

The White House maintained its stance that the 2015 Iran Nuclear deal was “defective at its core” and failed to deliver the safety of the United States.

The joint statement issued from the European diplomats, however, said that the nuclear agreement of 2015 between the world powers and Iran “is working and delivering on its goal”, adding that UN nuclear inspectors have already confirmed in “11 consecutive reports” that Tehran is adhering to its part of the bargain.

“It is a key element of the global nuclear non-proliferation architecture, crucial for the security of Europe, the region, and the entire world,” said the statement, which apart of Mogherini was also signed by French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and the UK’s Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is very soon expected to deliver a televised address on Monday night to give a fitting response to Trump’s decision.

Under the breakthrough 2015 deal reached in Vienna, the Iranian government agreed to cut down considerably its uranium stockpile and scale back its enrichment programme far below the level required to build a nuclear weapon.

Iran also agreed without any time limit to notify United Nations inspectors if and when it builds a new nuclear facility.

In exchange to the deal, UN-approved sanctions were lifted in January 2016, and then Tehran was allowed to resume trading oil and gas on the international market. A total of $100bn in frozen Iranian assets was also released with immediate effect.

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