Iran FM hopeful of forging a “clear future design” for nuclear deal

Vastavam web: Iran’s foreign minister said today he was hopeful of forging a “clear future design” for the nuclear deal facing collapse after Washington’s withdrawal, at the start of a diplomatic tour aimed at rescuing the agreement.”We hope that with this visit to China and other countries we will be able to construct a clear future design for the comprehensive agreement,” Mohammad Javad Zarif told reporters after talks in Beijing with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi.

Zarif will later fly to Moscow and Brussels to consult the remaining signatories to the 2015 agreement denounced by US President Donald Trump.As he arrived in Beijing, Zarif said Tehran was “ready for all option(s)”, according to the semi-official ISNA news agency.

“If the nuclear deal is to continue, the interests of the people of Iran must be assured,” he added.After their meeting, Zarif and Wang hailed the “comprehensive strategic partnership” between their countries, with the Chinese minister saying: “I hope and believe that these visits to multiple countries will… help protect Iran’s legitimate national interests and peace and stability in the region.”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 international community”.

It reiterated that Iran was preparing to resume “industrial scale” uranium enrichment “without any restrictions” unless Europe provided solid guarantees it could maintain trade ties despite renewed US sanctions.Trump hit back last evening, tweeting that the accord had failed to contain Iran’s militarism.”Iran’s Military Budget is up more than 40 per cent since the Obama negotiated Nuclear Deal was reached… just another indicator that it was all a big lie,” he wrote. Tehran, which has sought to avoid an escalation in a regional conflict that could alienate its European partners, has not commented on whether its forces were hit.

Israel and its allies have blamed Iran’s Revolutionary Guards for initiating Thursday’s exchange by launching missiles into the occupied Golan Heights.Iran denies the claims, saying the Israeli strikes were launched on “invented pretexts”.Meanwhile, European diplomats in Tehran fumed that Trump’s decision to withdraw from the deal could undermine years of patient work to restore commercial and diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic.Iranian hardliners — who have long opposed President Hassan Rouhani’s moves to improve ties with the West — are already mobilising against the efforts to save the nuclear deal.

Mohammad Ali Jafari, head of the Revolutionary Guards, said the country could not rely on the West.”We hope recent events will lead us not to trust in the West and even Europeans,” he said Sunday, according to the conservative-linked Fars news agency.