Iran nuclear pact: Hassan Rouhani sets conditions to stay
Dubai — Iran will remain committed to the 2015 nuclear deal if its interests are protected, President Hassan Rouhani says, while his foreign minister hopes the pact can be redesigned without the US as a member.
The US withdrawal from the accord last week was a "violation of morals", Rouhani said in remarks reported by state television. "If the remaining five countries continue to abide by the agreement, Iran will remain in the deal despite the will of America," he said.
President Donald Trump’s pullout has upset European allies, cast uncertainty over oil supplies and raised the risk of conflict in the Middle East.
Rouhani made similarly conciliatory comments on Tuesday, and on Saturday, as foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif began a tour of other signatory nations in a bid to save the deal.
Zarif said in Beijing on Sunday: "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."
China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, said Zarif’s tour would improve understanding of Iran’s position and help Tehran protect its legitimate interests.
"China is willing to maintain communication and coordination with all relevant parties, including Iran, and take an objective, fair and responsible attitude to continue to safeguard the agreement," Wang said.
Rouhani has said Iran will stay committed to the deal, which China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany also signed, provided those powers ensured Iran was protected from sanctions.
The three European states have recommitted to the agreement, but senior cleric Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami said on Friday that Europe was not to be trusted.