Moscow does not rule out Iran's pullout from nuclear deal - diplomat

An oil pump is seen at sunset outside Vaudoy-en-Brie near Paris France

An oil pump is seen at sunset outside Vaudoy-en-Brie near Paris France

On Friday, Iran's foreign minister, Javad Zarif, doubled down on Iran's right to enrich uranium, even as the country seeks a path to maintain the nuclear deal with the other adoptees.

Bolton also reiterated the administration's objection to the sunset provisions in the Iran deal, which President Donald Trump called "totally unacceptable".

Merkel said Friday the unilateral United States withdrawal undermines confidence in the global order, but that it wasn't enough to abandon decades of cross-Atlantic cooperation.

Oil extended gains above $71 a barrel as a conflict between Israel and Iran ratcheted up, increasing prospects for tighter global supply after the US renewed sanctions on OPEC's third-largest producer.

Under the 2015 agreement with France, Germany, Britain, Russia, China and the US, Iran agreed to put curbs on its nuclear programme in exchange for the lifting of some sanctions.

Russia's top diplomat said in the coming days Zarif would also hold meetings with all participants of the JCPOA, except for the United States, which made a decision to withdraw from the agreement.

Arguing the nuclear deal wasn't tough enough on Iran, Trump's government is now re-imposing sanctions, and any companies or governments with links to the USA face sanctions if they do not comply.

Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says in a statement that the "information provides new and compelling details about Iran's efforts to develop missile-deliverable nuclear weapons".

Before leaving, Zarif published a government statement on his Twitter page, slamming Trump's "extremist administration" for abandoning "an accord recognised as a victory of diplomacy by the worldwide community".


Although most analysts believe the U.S. withdrawal has effectively scuppered the agreement, Iran's foreign minister talked up the prospects of its survival on Sunday while visiting China, another of the signatories.

"We are gonna work with all of the Europeans. I'm not the national security decision-maker", he continued. "If the European Union leans towards accommodating the U.S., all the progress we have made since 2015 will be lost".

A number of top Iranian officials and politicians have threatened in the past week to restart the country's nuclear program following Trump's decision to leave the deal.

Mohammad Ali Jafari, head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, said the country could not rely on the West.

"He is hopeful we can continue strong cooperation", she added.

In response to comments that the Rouhani administration should apologize to the people, the statement read that "the people who should apologize for their previous incorrect" positions are those who are not ready to tell us what the damage from sanctions were and what steps they took to prevent those damages.

That it is preparing to resume "industrial-scale" uranium enrichment "without any restrictions" unless Europe can provide solid guarantees that it can maintain trade ties despite renewed U.S. sanctions.

The bank's analysts wrote Thursday that collapsing oil production in Venezuela and potential export disruptions in Iran could push the price of Brent crude as high as $100 per barrel in 2019. "It is time for responsible nations to bring pressure on Iran to change this unsafe behavior", Sanders said.

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