World powers, Iran to hold talks in Vienna on Friday

Foreign ministers China, France, Russia, UK, and Germany are set to hold their first meeting with Iranian officials on Friday in Vienna since the United States withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal, official media reported Thursday.

The meeting, which has been called upon Tehran’s request, will be chaired by EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, diplomatic sources said on condition of anonymity, according to Austria Press Agency.

It will discuss ways to keep the nuclear pact active and effective, as well as EU’s proposal to protect Iran’s economy through financial packs and guarantees, said sources.

In return, the proposal asks Tehran to preserve the interests of active European companies in the country, particularly those that inked deals with Iranian companies after easing of sanctions.

Iran’s current difficult economic situation, as well as fears of possible world countries’ joining US President Donald Trump’s demand to stop all Iran oil imports, have pushed Iranian government to put pressure on EU to find a solution for the US threat.

Tehran might be willing to make some amendments on the nuclear deal to satisfy Washington and avoid possible new sanctions by next November, the sources indicated.

US President Donald Trump announced on May 8 that he was pulling his country out of the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran.

During a White House appearance, Trump said “the Iran deal is defective at its core. Therefore, I am announcing today that the United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.” Trump then signed a presidential memorandum that he said was “reinstating nuclear sanctions” against the Iranian regime.

The agreement, negotiated among Iran and key US allies in Europe, lifted most US and international sanctions against Tehran in exchange for restrictions, including rigorous inspections.

Source: Kuwait News Agency