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Iran nuclear deal in danger of falling apart, warns Russia

Russia’s foreign minister said the deal is in danger of no longer existing without the compliance of the United States and the European Union.

Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, right, with Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko)
Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, right, with Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

By Associated Press Reporter

Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers is in danger of falling apart, Russia’s foreign minister has warned.

Sergei Lavrov said after meeting with his Iranian counterpart in Moscow that the agreement is in danger without the compliance of the United States and the European Union.

The 2015 deal between Iran and the UK, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States lifted sanctions on Iran in exchange for limits on its nuclear programme. The US withdrew from the accord last year and imposed crippling economic sanctions that block Iran from selling crude oil abroad.

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Sergey Lavrov warned that the deal is in danger (AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Mr Lavrov said: “Because of the destructive line that Washington keeps towing, this important achievement of international diplomacy… is in danger of falling apart.”

He added that “colleagues from the European Union” were not fully complying with the agreement either.

In response to the US sanctions, Iran has pressured the European signatories to find a way to limit the impact on the Iranian economy.

Tehran has slowly inched toward ceasing its own compliance with the terms of the deal. Last week, for example, the country began new operations at a heavy water nuclear reactor.

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Iran’s and Russia’s foreign ministers met in Moscow (AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Iran’s moves have been condemned by Western governments as unwelcome and escalating tensions in the region, while Russia and China have repeatedly blamed the US.

After meeting with Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif, Mr Lavrov said Russia would demand full compliance from both the US and the EU, in which case Iran would be able to return to fulfilling its obligations in accordance with the deal.

He said the agreement should be considered as “no longer existing” if this did not happen.

PA

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