PARIS, France said on Thursday that it had “taken note” of the seven conditions set out by the Iranian leadership concerning the perpetuation of a nuclear agreement with three European powers and Russia and China.
The United States has withdrawn from the nuclear deal, signed in Vienna in 2015, casting doubt over its future. Washington has further threatened to place sanctions on any non-US company investing or doing business with Iran and US sanctions that were eased after the accord are to be re-instated.
France has said several times it wants to continue with the accord as long as Iran respects its obligations, notably to refrain from uranium enrichment or any programmes that could lead to proliferation of nuclear weapons.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Agnes von der Muhll reiterated the French view by saying “the accord is not dead,” a position already taken this week by Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian.
Von der Muhll added that the European partners in the Iranian deal had agreed on the need to keep it alive and also expressed “determination” to protect their companies working in Iran “because we have not left the accord and we want to respect it.” The official also pointed out that this means Iran must stick to its part of the agreement.
“The maintaining of the nuclear accord by the Europeans implies, above all, that Iran continues to strictly apply the nuclear conditions,” she indicated.
This is vital for regional and international security and for the integrity of the nuclear non-proliferation system, on the one hand, but Paris also raised its ongoing concerns about regional security and certain Iranian military programmes.
“The European willingness to stay in the accord does not preclude in any way the subjects of concern that we have with regard to Iran, in particular its ballistic programme and its regional military presence, direct or indirect,” von der Muhll affirmed.
France has proposed a global negotiations framework with Iran to address these issues, a move not well-received in Tehran.
“We hope that Iran understands the interest of a cooperative approach” to these questions, the French spokeswoman said.
She also noted that Iran was on the agenda for talks Thursday and Friday between President Emmanuel Macron and Russian leader Vladimir Putin as they meet in Saint Petersburg.
Source: Kuwait News Agency