German FM warns against military escalation over Iranian nuclear accord dispute

Source: Xinhua| 2017-10-16 20:51:02|Editor: Song Lifang
Video PlayerClose

BERLIN, Oct. 16 (Xinhua) -- German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel (SPD) has warned on Monday against a military escalation as a consequence of the U.S. withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear accord.

Europeans were "very concerned" that the decision of U.S. President Donald Trump to de-certify Tehran's compliance with the accord could lead to a "military confrontation" in the region, Gabriel said.

The German foreign minister announced that he would hold discussions with his colleagues in Europe and beyond on how to save the Iranian nuclear accord.

Trump recently adopted a more aggressive stance towards Iran by refusing to certify the country's compliance with the 2015 program.

The move was widely-condemned in European capitals, leading Gabriel to express fears over the future of the transatlantic alliance.

"We also have to tell the Americans that their behavior on the Iran issue will drive us Europeans into a common position with Russia and China against the USA", Gabriel said.

During his Friday speech, President Trump called the Iran nuclear deal, formally known as Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), "one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into," and blamed Tehran for committing "multiple violations of the agreement" and "not living up to the spirit of the deal."

Iran has insisted that its nuclear energy program is aimed at civilian purposes.

Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said on Sunday that Trump's recent anti-Iran speech was under the influence of lobbyists from Israel and Saudi Arabia.

The nuclear deal was reached between Iran and six countries including Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany in July 2015. So far, the deal had helped defuse the Iran nuclear crisis and bolstered the international non-proliferation regime.