Germany, France, UK, EU urge Iran to revert to upholding nuclear deal
The foreign ministers of Germany, France, Britain and the European Union said on Tuesday that they were concerned about Iran scaling up its uranium enrichment and urged Tehran to revert to upholding the 2015 nuclear deal. Iran has said it will boost its uranium enrichment in a few hours above a cap set by the nuclear deal, a move that could mean the return of all economic sanctions on Tehran. "We express deep concern that Iran is not meeting several of its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action," the ministers said, referring to the nuclear deal's formal name (JCPoA).
© Kevin Lamarque / Reuters
In the ongoing tensions with Iran , he has preferred to let sanctions do the talking while signaling that he is open to dialogue. Yet Iran ’s continued provocations have become hard to ignore. This week it seized a Panamanian-flagged, UAE-based tanker and accused its crew of smuggling fuel.
Read: Tensions with Iran reach the point of inevitability . After Trump pulled out from the Obama administration’s nuclear deal with Iran , America’s European allies remained signatories—and European leaders tended to paint Iran as the victim of the Trump administration’s increasing confrontationalism.
Something like this was bound to happen.
The U.S. Navy shot down an Iranian drone over the Strait of Hormuz after President Donald Trump said it came within a “threatening” range and ignored “multiple calls to stand down.”
Trump said the action taken by the USS Boxer, a Wasp-class amphibious assault ship, was “defensive.” “This is the latest of many provocative and hostile actions against vessels operating in international waters,” he added.
An MV-22 Osprey aircraft takes off on the deck of the USS Boxer (LHD-4) in the Arabian Sea off Oman, on July 17.
Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif speaks as he attends a high-level political forum on sustainable development on July 17, at the UN Headquarters in New York.
This undated photo provided by Iranian state television's English-language service, Press TV, shows the Panamanian-flagged oil tanker MT Riah surrounded by Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessels.
An MV-22 Osprey aircraft lands on the deck of USS Abraham Lincoln the Gulf of Oman near the Strait of Hormuz, on July 15.
F/A-18F aircraft are seen on the deck of USS Abraham Lincoln in the Gulf of Oman near the Strait of Hormuz, on July 15.
Radar is seen on the monitoring tower of USS Boxer (LHD-4) in the Arabian Sea off Oman, on July 16.
U.S. Representative Seth Moulton (D-MA) speaks in favor of inclusion of House Amendment #270 to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), aimed at preventing war with Iran, at the Capitol in Washington, DC, on July 10.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani meets with Emmanuel Bonne, French President Macron's top diplomatic adviser, in Tehran, Iran, on July 10.
A warship belonging to the British Navy, allegedly sent to the Strait of Hormuz, is seen passing through the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey, on July 12.
A formation of Avenger-class mine countermeasure ships USS Devastator (MCM 6), USS Gladiator (MCM 11), USS Sentry (MCM 3), USS Dextrous (MCM 13), the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Mason (DDG 87) and an MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopter assigned to the “Blackhawks” of Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron (HSM) 15 maneuver in the Arabian Sea, July 6.
Supertanker Grace 1 off the coast of Gibraltar on July 6. Iran demanded on July 5 that Britain immediately release the tanker it had detained, accusing it of acting at the bidding of the United States. Authorities in Gibraltar, a British overseas territory on Spain's southern tip at the western entrance to the Mediterranean, said they suspected the tanker was carrying crude oil to Syria in violation of EU sanctions.
Crew members walk down a ladder on board supertanker Grace 1 off the coast of Gibraltar on July 6.
British soldiers are seen during an operation involving the oil supertanker Grace 1.
Oil supertanker Grace 1 is seen in waters of the British overseas territory of Gibraltar, historically claimed by Spain, on July 4.
(L to R) Iran's Atomic Energy Organization spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi, government spokesman Ali Rabiei, and Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi give a joint press conference at the presidential headquarters in Tehran on July 7. Iran said it would begin enriching uranium beyond a 3.67 percent cap set by a landmark nuclear deal "in a few hours", the Islamic republic's atomic energy organisation spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said on July 7.
How Donald Trump pushed Iran to the bomb
Since the day he took office, President Trump has been caught in an Iran trap, or more precisely, two traps. The first led the President to withdraw from the Iran nuclear agreement and pursue a "maximum pressure" campaign. The second will almost certainly lead to air strikes against Iran's nuclear facilities, perhaps within the year. Following that attack, Iran will likely respond by kicking out international inspectors and going for the bomb. If that happens, Iran will have gone from the most inspected country in the world and, by all serious accounts, a country that was in compliance with the international nuclear agreement to a country armed with nuclear weapons.
A sign of existing tensions , Friday, December 4, and even though so far he boasted of having A first ransom amount reaches a million dollars. .but one has the impression that it is only a decoy and that this Payback should be inevitable . This is precisely the meaning of the inevitability of punishment.
The 2019–20 Iranian protests also known as the Bloody November in Iran (Persian: آبان خونین), were a series of nationwide civil protests in Iran , initially caused by a 50%–200% increase in fuel prices
A British Royal Navy ship (L) patrols near supertanker Grace 1 suspected of carrying crude oil to Syria in violation of EU sanctions after it was detained off the coast of Gibraltar on July 4. Iran demanded on July 5, that Britain immediately release the tanker, accusing it of acting at the bidding of the United States.
Aircraft maneuver into position for an Independence Day air power demonstration on the flight deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln in the Arabian Sea on July 4. The USS Abraham Lincoln was rushed to the Mideast amid tensions between the U.S. and Iran as its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers unravels.
Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh answers journalists' questions on July 1 in Vienna, Austria.
Acting U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Jonathan Cohen addresses the U.N. Security Council briefing on implementation of the resolution that endorsed the Iran nuclear deal at the United Nations headquarters in New York, June 26.
Iran's Ambassador to the United Nations (UN) Majid Takht Ravanchi delivers a speech during the U.N. Security Council on implementation of the resolution that endorsed the Iran nuclear deal at the United Nations headquarters on June 26.
U.S. Air Force aircraft taxi to take-off from Joint Base Langley-Eustis in Virginia on June 25.
A U.S. Air Force (USAF) pilot from the 4th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron enters the cockpit of an F-35A Lightning II before Exercise Tri-Lightning, at Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates, June 25.
Iranian president Hassan Rouhani speaks during the cabinet meeting in Tehran, on June 26. Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman, Abbas Mousavi, said in a tweet that the newly announced sanctions meant that the channel of diplomacy has been closed forever.
A handout photo made available by the supreme leader office shows Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei speaking during a meeting with Iranian judiciary officials in Tehran, on June 26. According to reports, Khamenei said his country will 'never retreat' in the face of US sanctions, two days after US President Donald Trump signed an executive order for additional sanctions against Iran and its leadership.
An F/A-18E Super Hornet launches from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier of USS Abraham Lincoln, in Arabian Sea, on June 22.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani speaks in a meeting with the Health Ministry officials, in Tehran, Iran on June 25. Iran on Tuesday sharply criticized new U.S. sanctions targeting the Islamic Republic's supreme leader and other top officials.
President Donald Trump displays an executive order imposing fresh sanctions on Iran in the Oval Office of the White House, on June 24.
A copy of Kayhan Iranian newspaper is seen in Tehran, Iran on June 25, 2019. Title reads "New sanctions from US against Iran".
US National Security Advisor John Bolton (R) speaks next to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) and Nikolai Patrushev (C), Russian Secretary of the Security Council, during a press conference of the trilateral meeting of the US, Russian and Israeli national security advisers in Jerusalem, Israel on June 25. The meeting is a first-ever trilateral summit between the Russian, Israeli and American national security advisers with Nikolai Patrushev Russian Secretary of the Security Council, Meir Ben Shabbat, Israeli Security adviser and John Bolton, US National Security Advisor. the trilateral summit talks focuses on Iran, Syria and regional issues.
An Iranian woman walks past a mural painting depicting the late founder of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (R) and Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Tehran, Iran on June 25.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (L) meets with Mohamed ben Zayed Al-Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, in Abu Dhabi, UAE on June 24. The United States, Britain, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have jointly called for "diplomatic solutions" to ease soaring tensions with Iran.
Iran's ambassador to the United Nations Majid Takht-Ravanchi (L) addresses the media at the Security Council stakeout area before the start of the UN Security Council meeting on the situation in Iran at United Nations Headquarters in New York, on June 24.
Iran's ambassador to the United Nations Majid Takht-Ravanchi holds up a picture as he addresses the media at the Security Council stakeout area before the start of the UN Security Council meeting on the situation in Iran at United Nations Headquarters in New York, on June 24.
Seated under a portrait of the Saudi monarch, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (L) meets with Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at Al Salam Palace in the Red Sea port of Jeddah on June 24. - Pompeo arrived Monday in Saudi Arabia for talks on coordinating with the close ally amid mounting tensions with Iran.
Iranian Judiciary chief Ebrahim Rais (C) attends a meeting with foreign ambassadors in Iran in the Islamic republic's capital Tehran on June 24. - Iran denied the same day it was hit by a US cyber attack as Washington was due to tighten sanctions on Tehran in a standoff sparked by the US withdrawal from a nuclear deal.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks to the media at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, U.S. June 23, before boarding a plane headed to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
President Donald Trump walks off Marine One at the White House after spending the weekend at Camp David on June 23, in Washington, DC. President Donald Trump warned the United States may launch a devastating military attack on Iran unless it comes to the negotiating table and drops its bid to develop nuclear weapons.
Protesters gather in front of the White House to speak out against a possible war with Iran on June 23, in Washington, DC. U.S. President Donald Trump said he almost launched a retaliatory strike after it was alleged that Iran shot down an unmanned U.S. drone last week, in a tweet he said he called off the attack after learning the number of potential casualties.
The Organization of Iranian American Communities march to urge "recognition of the Iranian people's right for regime change," in front of the White House in Washington, DC, on June 21.
President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on June 20 in Washington. Trump declared that "Iran made a very big mistake" in shooting down a U.S. drone but suggested it was an accident rather than a strategic error.
Israel Compares Europe's Iran Nuclear Deal Decision to Appeasing Nazi Germany Before World War II
The EU considers Iran's heightened uranium enrichment to be "reversible" and not a "significant" breach of the 2015 nuclear deal abandoned entirely by the United States.
As tensions with Iran have escalated over the past week, National Security Council officials close to Bolton were initially dismissive of the need to draw up Trump denied on Wednesday there was any "infighting" over his Middle East policy. But he reiterated his desire to open talks with Iran , a wish he's
As tensions are building up between Iran and the West, the security and the future of the Strait of Hormuz is becoming increasingly unpredictable. The Point : Is the WHO too much under China's sway?
Supporters clash with a group of counter-protesters from Code Pink demonstrating against a rally outside of the U.S. State Department held in support of regime change in Iran on June 21 in Washington, DC.
A series of tweets written by President Donald Trump regarding a retaliatory attack on Iran are displayed on a computer screen in New York, on June 21.
General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, Iran's Head of the Revolutionary Guard's aerospace division, speaks to media next to debris from a downed US drone reportedly recovered within Iran's territorial waters and put on display by the Revolutionary Guard in the capital Tehran on June 21.
Protesters hold signs spelling out, "No War," outside the White House, on June 20 in Washington, after President Trump tweeted that "Iran made a very big mistake" by shooting down a US surveillance drone over the Strait of Hormuz in Iran.
This map provided by the Department of Defense shows the site where they say a U.S. Navy RQ-4 drone was shot down. The Department of Defense says the drone was flying over the Gulf of Oman and the Strait of Hormuz on a surveillance mission in international airspace in the vicinity of recent IRGC maritime attacks when it was shot down by an IRGC surface to air missile fired from a launch site in the vicinity of Goruk, Iran.
Gulf tensions rise as US shoots down Iranian drone
Tensions in the Gulf region mounted Thursday as US President Donald Trump said an American naval vessel shot down an Iranian drone that threatened the ship as it was entering the Strait of Hormuz. It was the first US military engagement with Iran following a series of increasingly serious incidents. Trump announced that the USS Boxer, an amphibious assault ship, "took defensive action" against the Iranian drone as it was "threatening the safety of the ship and the ship's crew." The drone was "immediately destroyed," Trump said, after it approached within 1,000 yards (914 meters) of the Boxer, Trump said.
The recent Middle East confrontations between the U.S. and Iran has done little to permanently push up the price of oil. Oil prices spiked on the days when there were acts of aggression, but quickly retraced as the other side contained its response.
Whether true or not, tensions between Iran and the US are putting Iraq in a tough position. The evacuation order comes amid international concern a major conflict could erupt, with Iran resisting the United States' "maximum pressure" campaign against Tehran following Washington's withdrawal from
A still image from surveillance video provided by the U.S. military shows what they say is a drone being shot down over the Strait of Hormuz on June 20.
U.S. Air Force maintainers prepare a military drone RQ-4A Global Hawk for takeoff at an undisclosed location in Southwest Asia. Picture taken on Dec. 2, 2010.
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is seen near a "3 Khordad" system which was allegedly been used to shoot down a U.S. military drone, according to news agency Fars, in this undated handout picture.
Flight deck of the U.S aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) is seen as sailors sweep the deck for foreign object and debris (FOD) on May 19, in Arabian Sea.
Journalists take pictures of a magnet the U.S. Navy says came from a limpet mine that didn't explode on a Japanese-owned oil tanker at a 5th Fleet base, during a trip organized by the Navy for journalists, near Fujairah, United Arab Emirates, on June 19.
A picture taken during a guided tour by the US Navy (NAVCENT) shows the Japanese oil tanker Kokuka Courageous off the port of the Gulf emirate of Fujairah on June 19.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani speaks in a ceremony at Imam Khomeini International Airport some 25 miles (40 kilometers) south of the capital Tehran, Iran, on June 18. President Rouhani says his country is not seeking to wage war against any nation while at the same time stressing that it will withstand mounting U.S. pressure and emerge victorious.
This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on June 17, and taken from a U.S. Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says is the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy after removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous.
This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on June 17, and taken from a U.S. Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says are members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous.
State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus speaks at a news conference at the State Department in Washington, on June 17.
U.S. will shoot down any Iranian drones that fly 'too close' to its ships, official says
The United States will destroy any Iranian drones that fly "too close" to its ships in the Strait of Hormuz and has evidence that it shot down a drone on Thursday, a senior Trump administration official said on Friday. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle)
}); Iran dismissed U.S. President Donald Trump's assertion that the U.S. Navy destroyed one of its drones. Iran said all of its unmanned planes were accounted for, amid growing international concern that both sides could blunder into a war in the Gulf.
This satellite image provided by Maxar Technologies shows the oil tanker Kokuka Courageous off the coast of Fujairah, United Arab Emirates, on June 17.
Crew members of the Kokuka Courageous oil tanker receive medical attention from military personnel aboard missile destroyer USS Bainbridge, at sea, June 13.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks from the State Department briefing room on June 13, in Washington, DC. Pompeo said, "It is the assessment of the U.S. government that Iran is responsible for today's attacks in the Gulf of Oman. These attacks are a threat to international peace and security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation, and an unacceptable escalation of tension by Iran."
This picture, obtained by AFP from Iranian News Agency ISNA on June 13, reportedly shows fire and smoke billowing from a tanker said to have been attacked in the waters of the Gulf of Oman.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (L) shakes hands with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, during a welcoming ceremony at the Saadabad Palace in the capital Tehran on June 12. Abe arrived in Tehran on June 12 for a rare diplomatic mission, hoping to defuse tensions between the Islamic republic and Tokyo's ally Washington.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a media briefing at the State Department June 10, in Washington, D.C. Secretary Pompeo discussed topics including the latest development on tension with Iran.
This undated photograph from the United Arab Emirates' Mission to the United Nations released Thursday, June 6, shows a diver investigating the damage done to the Saudi-owned oil tanker Al Marzoqah off the coast of Fujairah, United Arab Emirates. A joint statement released Thursday by Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Norway said the damage done to the four oil tankers off the UAE likely came from limpet mines placed by a "state actor" amid U.S. and Saudi allegations Iran carried out the sabotage. Iran has denied being involved amid heightened tensions between Tehran and Washington.
The USS Abraham Lincoln carrier and a U.S. Air Force B-52H Stratofortress, conduct joint exercises in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility in Arabian sea on June 1.
Saudi King Salman chairs the Islamic Summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on June 1, in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. May 31 and June 1 Salman hosts three high-level summits in Mecca, drawing heads of state from across the Middle East and Muslim countries to present a unified Muslim and Arab position on Iran. The monarch called on the international community to use all means to confront Iran and accuses the Shiite power of being behind "terrorist operations" that targeted Saudi oil interests.
Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan and Secretary of state Mike Pompeo and Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford (not in picture) give a statement after a closed-door briefing on Iran at the Capitol on May 21 in Washington, DC.
President Trump talks to journalists as he departs the White House for a campaign rally in Pennsylvania on May 20 in Washington, DC. On his way to Montoursville, Pennsylvania, Trump said that Iran does not currently pose a direct threat to the United States.
Trump admin weighs tightening restrictions on Iran's nuclear work
A key plank of the 2015 nuclear accord let Iran keep a limited civilian nuclear program. Scrapping it could trigger the final collapse of the JCPOA deal.
An F/A-18E Super Hornet is launched from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln on May 16 in the Arabian Sea.
The confrontation came amid escalating provocations by the Iranian government, lashing out against the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” campaign. Still, Trump has been reluctant to use force—on a recent occasion pulling back on a strike after Iran shot down an American drone, saying the U.S. response wouldn’t have been proportionate. Today’s action allows the Trump administration to appear tough, but, given the tensions, it also risks escalation in an already volatile region.
The Trump administration has coupled its tough talk against Iran with escalating sanctions designed to cripple Iran’s economy. As part of this effort, the Treasury Department on Thursday sanctioned a network of front companies and agents that it said were “involved in the procurement of sensitive materials for sanctioned elements of Iran’s nuclear program.” Other aspects of the Iranian economy have also been sanctioned, and the Revolutionary Guard Corps has been labeled a terrorist organization. These steps will have far more of an impact on Iran’s actions than Thursday’s downing of a drone.
Washington has also accused the Islamic Republic of attacking tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Meanwhile, Iran has increased its uranium-enrichment activity to a level that imperils its commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal, which the Trump administration withdrew from last year. The deal’s European signatories have been unable to provide Iran with sufficient economic relief, because most such attempts would violate American sanctions.
Truth or lies? What we know about Iran's claim that it arrested 17 spies working for the CIA
Iran claims it arrested 17 spies recruited by the Central Intelligence Agency, but the Trump administration has dismissed the claim as false.
Behnam Ben Taleblu, a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, said in a statement that the tensions were unlikely to lead to “World War III,” adding that Iran’s goal was to get “America to cease its maximum pressure campaign” and “return to” the nuclear deal.
“While the regime in Tehran will need to recalibrate in the short term, it’s likely that Iran will continue to escalate in other theaters, be it across the Gulf region or in cyberspace,” he said.
Last month Trump considered air strikes on Iran after it shot down a U.S. surveillance drone, but pulled back at the last minute because of the possibility of civilian casualties. At the time, Trump said killing Iranians wouldn’t be “proportionate to shooting down an unmanned drone.”
The U.S. action today satisfies Trump’s cautious approach to military action. The president, despite some of his more hawkish advisers’ instincts to the contrary, has adamantly opposed any action that could metastasize into a wider conflict. (His major intervention in Syria came only after the Assad regime used chemical weapons on civilians, including children.) In the ongoing tensions with Iran, he has preferred to let sanctions do the talking while signaling that he is open to dialogue. Yet Iran’s continued provocations have become hard to ignore. This week it seized a Panamanian-flagged, UAE-based tanker and accused its crew of smuggling fuel. Last week, the U.K. defense ministry said Iran tried to block passage of a British tanker in the Strait of Hormuz; that’s after British forces seized an Iranian tanker they said was headed to Syria in violation of European sanctions against the Assad regime.
Even though both sides—the U.S. and Iran—insist they don’t want war, the preexisting tensions in the region, combined with Iran’s anger at being denied the benefits of the nuclear agreement, mean that one miscalculated provocation could lead to a larger conflagration.
“We live in a very dangerous environment,” the Iranian foreign minister, Javad Zarif, said Thursday at the United Nations before news of the drone was made public. “The United States has pushed itself and the rest of the world into probably the brink of an abyss.”
Iran observes all U.S. ships in Gulf region: Iran navy chief.
Iran observes all U.S. ships in Gulf region: Iran navy chief