Iran's Zarif hails 'will to resist' United States pressure on nuclear deal

Iran's Zarif hails 'will to resist' United States pressure on nuclear deal

With tensions rising over the strategic waterway, the European Union is proposing a plan for salvaging a multinational nuclear deal with Tehran after Washington withdrew, but Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told leaders in Paris and Berlin on Thursday that the package did not go far enough.

Iran is also anxious about continuing its oil exports to other markets and about being shut out of global bank payments systems.

"If they continue to demonstrate the political will they showed today, they will get things done without any problem".

Their foreign ministers were holding talks in Vienna, where the accord was signed in 2015 with the aim of stopping Iran from building the atomic bomb in return for sanctions relief that promised greater trade and investment for the country.

"Now we need to enter into the implementation stage", Zarif, speaking in Persian, told reporters gathered at the Austrian capital.

Washington has since told allies they must stop buying the OPEC producer's oil from November 4 or face financial consequences.

However, he warned that if the European sides fail to properly fulfill their commitments, Iran would take its own measures to counter the USA withdrawal from the JCPOA.

The tour, which aimed to seek guarantees from European powers over the 2015 nuclear deal after the USA unilaterally pulled out in May, was overshadowed by news of the arrests.


Rouhani, who visited Switzerland and Austria this week to rally support for the nuclear deal's survival, said in a phone call with Macron that the package "does not meet all our demands", Iran's state news agency IRNA reported.

Trump also said he would reinstate sanctions on Iran and impose "the highest level" of economic bans on the Islamic Republic.

Ahead of the meeting, Zarif also held bilateral talks with Mogherini, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, according to Iranian news reports.

After the United States threat to penalize companies that do business with Iran, the remaining signatories said they would work for "the protection of companies from the extraterritorial effects of USA sanctions".

Rouhani told Merkel the US exit from the JCPOA has caused some problems in economic areas, banking transactions and oil sector for the foreign companies which have made investment in Iran, making them reluctant about continuing their operations in the country.

"After the withdrawal of the United States, which we can't understand, we face a hard situation", he added, but he stressed that "we want to make clear to Iran that it will still gain economic benefits through this agreement".

Speaking after three hours of talks, European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, who chaired the talks, read a statement from the six delegations repeating previously-announced broad priorities ranging from guaranteeing Iranian oil revenue to shipping ties, banking and all other trade and investment co-operation.

Rouhani warned on Wednesday that Iran could reduce its co-operation with the United Nations nuclear watchdog if the deal collapses.

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