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Iranian Foreign Minister visits Russia, China to save nuclear deal

16 May 2018

Another French firm that has a lot to lose in Iran is Total.

Analysts said Iran was determined to maintain the moral high ground in the coming weeks.

Second, no well-read person should believe that Iran would curtail its goal of annihilation of Israel and the United States, a goal that assuredly includes the development of nuclear weapons and a missile delivery system. And there is reason to worry. The Obama administration, when the JCPOA was negotiated, argued that eliminating Iran's civil nuclear research and its missile program were unrealistic concessions that the Iranian regime would not accept-and that was when the United States had the cooperation of its negotiating partners and an worldwide sanctions campaign on its side. "An aggressive Iran was emboldened as a result & its ballistic missile program became both offensive & exportable".

European powers alarmed by Donald Trump's withdrawal from the Iran nuclear accord set out this week on an urgent search for ways to hold the deal together and avoid a further escalation of violence in the Middle East. Israel responded on Thursday with strikes on Iranian targets across Syria that Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman claims destroyed "nearly all" of Iran's military supplies in the country. This necessitates close diplomatic coordination with Europe before the 180-day period lapses. Moscow has previously stated its strong support for the agreement.

Germany plans to offer legal advice to help its firms continue to do business in Iran, Economy Minister Peter Altmaier also said on Friday.

Putin has already spoken with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan about efforts to save the accord, after voicing his "deep concern" over Trump's decision.

"The decision was made because it was viewed to be in the best interests of the United States and something the President had promised during the campaign", said David Friedman, the U.S. ambassador to Israel.

On Wednesday, EU leaders will hold a dinner before a European Council meeting in Sofia at which they will discuss options to protect European businesses. A year later, he called for regime change while he was reportedly under consideration to be Trump's secretary of state. Put differently, the European Union sees the JCPOA as a multinational endeavor to use peaceful means of conflict resolution to [attempt] to solve a major global challenge. Putin has long advocated for a new financial system with China that would circumvent the reach of US sanctions, which also target his country.

"But Iran took advantage of the economic benefit [it gained] from the lifting of the sanctions in order to continue its activity to destabilize the region, particularly by developing ballistic missiles and by supporting terror organizations in the region - including Hizbullah [in Lebanon] and the Houthi militias [in Yemen] that use capabilities provided by Iran to harm the citizens of Saudi Arabia and Yemen and to repeatedly block worldwide seaways, thus grossly violating [UN] Security Council resolutions ..." And in global fora, Iran could use European arguments against Washington to paint American concerns about Iran's behavior as politically charged.

Moen Al-Taher, a Jordanian political analyst in Amman, contended to The Media Line that "a regional war was anyways inevitable, albeit President Trump's withdrawal from the nuclear pact will hasten this eventuality".

Iranian Foreign Minister visits Russia, China to save nuclear deal