Iran seeks European assurances, as oil penalties in the United States

Iran called on Saturday for European assurances of support in view of Washington's intention to reinstate sanctions on Iran's vital oil sales to force Tehran to curb its nuclear, missile and regional activities.

PHOTO PHOTO: Flames from an oil production platform in the Soroush oil fields in the Persian Gulf, south of Tehran, July 25, 2005. REUTERS / Raheb Homavandi / Photo Archive

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif spoke by telephone with European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and his counterparts from Germany, Sweden and Denmark on European measures to deal with US sanctions, Iranian state news agency IRNA .

"Mogherini and the European Ministers … have underlined the importance of the Finance Ministers' commitment to Europe's economic mechanism to save Iran's nuclear agreement and said the mechanism will work in the coming days," IRNA said.

Washington will once again apply extensive sanctions on Iran's oil and banking sectors from Monday.

Diplomats said last week at Reuters that the new EU mechanism to facilitate payments for Iran's exports should be lawfully enacted by November 4, when the next phase of US sanctions will be hit but will not work until the beginning the following year.

The EU, France, Germany and Britain, said in a joint statement on Friday that they regretted the decision by US President Donald Trump to restore sanctions to Iran, the world's oil exporter.

"Our goal is to protect European economic operators who have legitimate trade with Iran in accordance with European law and UN Security Council Resolution 2231," Mogurini and Foreign Ministers and Finance Ministers three countries.

The three largest European powers are co-signatories, along with Russia and China, in an international agreement of 2015 with Iran, which has re-examined its nuclear work in exchange for lifting most international sanctions in Tehran.

By imposing sanctions, Trump seeks to push Iran into tightening restrictions on its nuclear program and stop rocket development and support representative forces in Yemen, Syria, Lebanon and elsewhere in the Middle East.

Trump denounced the nuclear agreement signed before taking office as defective in favor of Iran and withdrew Washington from the pact in May.

Meanwhile, Iranian state television reported that the Islamic Republic had begun production of the locally designed Kowsar airplane for use in its air force.

Report from the Dubai newsroom. Editing by Mark Heinrich

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