Published: Thu, March 08, 2018
Global | By Enrique Rogers

United Nations chief nuke inspector: Iran nuclear deal must not fail

United Nations chief nuke inspector: Iran nuclear deal must not fail

France's foreign minister visited Iran on Monday on a delicate mission to affirm European support for the nuclear deal that eased the isolation of Iran's oil-based economy, while echoing USA concern about Tehran's ballistic missile tests and role in Middle East conflicts such as Syria.

Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Yukiya Amano told Press-TV that Iran has been compliant with the deal - and the JCPOA's collapse would be "a great loss".

Trump has been a vocal critic of the Iran deal since his 2016 campaign and, in January, waived new sanctions against the Islamic Republic for what he said was the last time.

While Iran has accepted curbs on its nuclear work - which it says is for purely peaceful purposes - it has repeatedly refused to discuss its missile programme, something the United States and European countries have called for.

Qassemi blasted attempts to link Iranian missiles to other issues, including the nuclear deal, saying Iran "will not [ask] permission from anyone on how to regulate these policies and will not allow any country to interfere in such issues and Iran's policies and will not hold talks on such cases".

"Relations between France and Iran are old and profound because France was a pioneer of archaeological exploration here", said Jean-Luc Martinez, president of the Louvre.

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (R) shakes hands with French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian as they meet in the capital Tehran on March 5, 2018.

The deal is "international diplomatic achievement", and it should be protected, he stressed.

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Le Drian first met Monday with Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council.

"Any move to undermine the JCPOA would result in the loss of credibility of other global agreements", said Shamkhani.

While French leaders, including President Emmanuel Macron, have criticised Iran's missile programme, French companies like oil giant Total SA have bullishly entered the Iranian market after the atomic accord, complicating any possible sanctions.

He said that both countries have new plans for boosting cooperation in monetary and banking interactions.

Iran's ballistic missile capacity and position "worries us enormously", Le Drian said last week at a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Le Drian arrived in Tehran on Monday for talks with Iranian officials on mutual ties as well as regional and global issues.

That continued with Iran's armed forces spokesman, Gen. Masoud Jazayeri, who this weekend said over the weekend that Tehran would only give up its missiles when the West abandons nuclear arms.

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