Iran FM in Moscow as Russia moves to save nuclear deal

Iranian state television Irib broadcasted images of Mohammad Javad Zarif in Moscow, saying he had arrived in Russia at 4am (01:00 GMT) on Monday and was due to meet Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov.  

Iran FM in Moscow as Russia moves to save nuclear deal

World Bulletin / News Desk

Iran's foreign minister was in Moscow on Monday as Russia tries to keep the Iran nuclear deal alive in the wake of Washington's pull-out, pushing it into rare cooperation with Europe. 

A Russian foreign ministry spokesman confirmed the pair would meet Monday morning.  

Zarif's diplomatic tour took him to Beijing at the weekend and will see him visit Brussels later in the week, as the international backers of the 2015 accord scrabble to save it.

After meeting his Chinese counterpart on Sunday, Zarif said he was hopeful of forging a "clear future design" for the accord.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has already spoken with Germany's Angela Merkel and Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan about the efforts, after voicing his "deep concern" over US President's Donald Trump's decision.

Trump's move to ditch the nuclear deal has infuriated Washington's allies in Europe as well as China and Russia.

"(European) cooperation with Russia, which until recently seemed impossible because of the Skripal (spy poisoning) case, with the expulsion of diplomats and the reduction of contact, is now receiving a fresh boost," consultant Andrei Baklitski of the PIR Center NGO said.

"The Europeans, after the withdrawal of the US from the deal, have found themselves forced to save the Joint Cooperative Plan of Action themselves," he added.

Moscow would have to play a key role in ensuring Tehran does not resume its nuclear programme, he said.

On Sunday US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Washington still wants to work with Europe to counter Iran's "malign behaviour".

But while Pompeo talked up the prospect of renewed coordination with America's allies, another top aide reminded Europe its companies could face sanctions if they continue to do business with the Middle Eastern power.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 14 Mayıs 2018, 09:31