Iran Key Focus of Talks at EU Foreign Affairs Council

The European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council is holding its last meeting before the summer break, and “the longest one in five years”, with a key focus on the issue of saving the Iran nuclear deal.

“We have probably today the longest ever Foreign Affairs Council of these five years, we have a very intense agenda,” EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini said upon arrival at the Foreign Affairs Council on Monday.

“We will start with a point on Iran. We will see how we can together with all the Member States and with the rest of our international partners preserve the nuclear deal [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] with Iran,” Mogherini added.

She also noted that the participants will “put in place all the measures so that Iran can go back to full compliance as it has been until a few days ago.”

Earlier in the day, France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said that Europe had to remain united in trying to preserve the Iran nuclear deal, and said Tehran should reverse its decision not to comply with parts of the accord.

“The Europeans have to stay united on this issue,” Le Drian told reporters at a meeting of foreign ministers in Brussels. Iran’s decision to reduce compliance with the deal that the United States abandoned last year was “a bad response to a bad decision,” he said.

In a statement on Monday, France, Britain, and Germany called for the resumption of dialogue and an end to the escalation over the Iran nuclear deal, amid heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran.

The three parties to the landmark accord expressed concern that the 2015 deal could potentially collapse following renewed sanctions by the United States and Iran’s decision to scale back some of its commitments in retaliation for the US’s unilateral withdrawal and the imposition of the sanctions.

This is while Iran has scaled back some of its commitments based on the provisions of the deal itself and not in breach of it.

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