UK : Iran nuclear deal ‘best’, May tells Netanyahu

British Prime Minister Theresa May has reiterated her country’s support for the Iran nuclear deal in talks with her Israeli counterpart, Benjamin Netanyahu, saying London would remain committed to its obligations under the multilateral accord as long as Tehran is.

In a meeting with Netanyahu on Wednesday, the UK premier said the UN-backed nuclear deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), remains “the best route” to what she called “preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.”

The UK premier conceded “differences of opinion” with Netanyahu regarding the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and said, “We will remain committed to it as long as Iran meets its obligations.”

She, however, said there were other issues, including Tehran’s ballistic missile activities and its regional role, that need to be addressed.

Netanyahu pressed May to recognize that the Iranian nuclear deal is on the point of collapse and that a fresh plan is needed to stop Iran from restarting its uranium enrichment program.

He told May that he was focused on making sure Iran did not get a “nuclear weapon,” and on “how to roll back Iran’s aggression in the region,” where Tehran is helping its neighbors fight terror.

London was the third and last destination in Netanyahu’s European tour, which had earlier taken him to France and Germany.

The German chancellor reiterates support for the Iran nuclear deal in talks with the Israeli PM, who is on a tour of Europe to lobby its leaders ”against” Iran.

The regime in Israel has stepped up its lobbying attempts against the Iran deal since the US’s withdrawal from the landmark accord in defiance of stern international warnings from the other signatories.

Contrary to the US and Israel, Europe insists the 2015 agreement works and Iran has respected it as repeatedly confirmed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The European signatories are now trying to come up with a package to ring-fence trade with Iran against renewed US financial sanctions to dissuade Tehran from quitting the accord.

The finance ministers and foreign secretaries of the UK, Germany and France have jointly written to the US, seeking assurances that Washington will not impose secondary sanctions on EU firms operating in Iran.

Major European powers as well as the EU urge Washington not to impose “secondary sanctions” against European firms doing business in Iran.

Their letter says that JCPOA is “the best means through which we can prevent a nuclear armed Iran.”

Washington has already re-introduced its nuclear-related sanctions against Tehran.

The White House was also quick to slap a series of bans on a number of Iranian individuals and entities, including CBI Governor Valiollah Seif.

Iran says the Europeans need to take practical measures to ensure its interests will still be protected after the US withdrawal.

In the first step to save the deal, the European Union activated last month its Blocking Statute, a law that makes it illegal for any European Union company to comply with US sanctions.

Meanwhile, sources said that US officials are touring the globe to pressure countries to shun trade with Iran following Washington’s withdrawal from the JCPOA.

Reuters reported Wednesday that US State and Treasury Department officials had traveled to Japan and this week US diplomats were in eastern Europe.

“The Americans are on a roadshow and going everywhere. They are dogmatic,” said a senior European diplomat. “We were clear and told them: if you are coming to tell to us how to apply American laws here then you’re not welcome,” the diplomat said.

US Under Secretary of the Treasury Sigal Mandelker said on Tuesday that, “We will hold those doing prohibited business in Iran to account.”

By Agencies

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