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Iran upbeat on N-deal hopes after EU talks

Iran upbeat on N-deal hopes after EU talks


AFP
Brussels
Iran's foreign minister said Tuesday that efforts to save the nuclear deal after the abrupt US withdrawal were"on the right track" as he began talks with European powers in Brussels.
Mohammad Javad Zarif met EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini ahead of evening talks with his counterparts from Britain, France and Germany -- the three European signatories to the 2015 landmark deal who are scrambling to preserve it.
Tehran has warned it is preparing to resume"industrial-scale" uranium enrichment"without any restrictions" unless Europe can provide solid guarantees that it can maintain the economic benefits it gained from the nuclear agreement despite the United States reimposing sanctions.
Zarif gave an upbeat assessment after a"good and constructive" meeting with Mogherini.
"I believe we're on the right track to move forward in order to ensure that interests of all the JCPOA remaining participants, particularly Iran, will be preserved and guaranteed," he told reporters. The deal's official name is the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA.
Mogherini said it had been a"very productive" meeting but indicated it was the start of a long road.
"We are working on the measures that we can start to put in place and we will look at the content of that," she said.
"One thing is absolutely sure is that the European Union is determined to preserve this deal that is essential to our security and the security of the region."
Zarif's meetings in Brussels cap a whirlwind global tour, including trips to both Russia and China, the two other signatory nations, in a bid to bolster support.
But European diplomats have sought to play down expectations of Tuesday's meeting, stressing the enormous challenge of finding a way around US sanctions punishing foreign businesses trading with Iran, which have global reach.

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