Iran: Maas tries to ease 'highly explosive' JCPOA situation on behalf of Europe

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas lamented the «highly explosive» situation and «dangerous escalation of tensions» between Iran and the United States on Monday, during a press conference in Tehran after a meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. «The situation we find ourselves in in the region here is highly explosive and extremely serious, and a dangerous escalation of... Еще tensions that are already present,» Maas said, adding that the potential military escalation would be in nobody's interest. During the press conference, Zarif blamed the Middle East's problems on Israel's «Zionist regime» and its US support, adding, «we have never started any wars and we will not do so. However, if another country starts a war with us, they will not be the ones to finish it.» Zarif's comments appeared to be responding to a tweet in May by US President Donald Trump, who said, «if Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran.» US President Donald Trump withdrew from the deal in 2018, re-imposing sanctions on Iran. Tehran responded in May 2019 by announcing it would partially withdraw from the deal, restarting some of its nuclear activity until European JCPOA signatories could help ease the sanctions. Maas, who travelled to Iran on behalf of the three European signatories of the JCPOA, Germany, France and the UK, said, «we stand by the JCPOA and we also want to stick to our responsibilities from the JCPOA, at the same time we can't work miracles but we still endeavour forcefully to do everything to avoid a failure [of the deal].» The Iranian government has set a July 7 deadline for putting its partial withdrawal from the agreement into action.
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