Sunday, 22 July, 2018

Iranian president travels to Austria in effort to salvage Iran deal

Iranian Vice President Jahangiri speaks during a news conference after a meeting with Iraq's top Shi'ite cleric in Najaf Despite impact on prices, U.S. will aim to bring Iran's oil revenue to zero
Charlie Simmons | 05 July, 2018, 02:32

During a press conference at the State Department, Hook called on Iran to meet demands so it could be, what he termed, "normal country".

But all the other signatories to the nuclear deal say they still support it.

"We should send a message to Washington showing how much the position of countries participating in the deal differs from the stance of (US President) Donald Trump", he said.

TRT World spoke to Sami Hamdi on the possible impact of an Iranian oil imports ban.

Rouhani's European trip will be of "prime importance" as it could "provide a more precise picture of cooperation between Iran and Europe", the Iranian foreign ministry spokesman said at the weekend.

In May, President Donald Trump announced that the U.S. was withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal signed by the Obama administration in 2015, under which Tehran had agreed to limit its sensitive nuclear activities and allow worldwide inspectors in return for the lifting of crippling economic sanctions.

Hanegbi's remarks came before senior diplomats from Iran, Britain, China, France, Germany and Russian Federation meet in Vienna on Friday, aiming to safeguard a pact reached in 2015.

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The Iranian leader issued the stark warning that Tehran would not be alone in seeing its oil sales drop should the United States force the shutdown of its order book as he toured Europe this week. US officials also warned that other countries would face sanctions unless they stopped doing business with Iran.

"At the meeting, which will be held at the request of Iran, foreign ministers of Iran and five world powers will discuss a proposed European package and measures to protect the agreement", Iranian state news agency IRNA reported on Tuesday. A third of all oil traded by sea passes through the strait and the US Navy regularly has direct, tense encounters with Iran's paramilitary Revolutionary Guard there. Under the accord, Iran agreed to reduce its nuclear facilities to have sanctions lifted to free up oil revenue and frozen assets of more than US$100 billion.

Iran had struck the JCPoA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) deal with the U.S., the UK, Russia, China, France and Germany after years of negotiations. "We can not pre-judge what the United States will be doing", said a source.

"We heard very clearly what Nikki Haley said and we are in no doubt the USA will use pressure, not just on us around the world".

The EU's foreign service, the EEAS, was not immediately available for comment on the meeting.

The meeting will seek "solutions to preserve the Iran nuclear deal after the illegal USA action to withdraw", it said. But European officials acknowledge that US sanctions make it hard to give Tehran guarantees. On Saturday, Trump wrote on Twitter that he had received assurances from King Salman of Saudi Arabia that the kingdom will increase oil production, "maybe up to 2,000,000 barrels" in response to turmoil in Iran and Venezuela.

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