MADRID, May 9 (Xinhua) -- Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said Wednesday that U.S. President Donald Trump's abandonment of the nuclear deal with Iran was "not good news", before explaining in Spanish Congress that Spain would continue to respect the agreement.
Rajoy said he "respected" Trump's reasons for his decision, but said Spain would not be following the same line.
"Spain and our European partners will defend the agreement, which I believe to be a significant advance, which all of the Western nations supported when it was reached in order to defend freedom, democracy and, above all, people's security," said Rajoy in a speech which was also published in a government press communique.
Trump confirmed Tuesday that the United States would abandon the accord with Iran signed by his predecessor Barack Obama in 2015, and renew the sanctions on Iran which the pact had ended.
The 2015 agreement meant Iran would not be able to construct a nuclear weapon for ten years in return for lifting the trade sanctions which were seriously harming the Iranian economy.
Rajoy also used his appearance in Congress to discuss the 2018 budget, which he said was "a fundamental objective," because it would allow his government to "do things we could not do during the economic crisis."
He also said he wanted to see the formation of a stable government in Catalonia, which is still without a leader nearly five months after the Dec. 21 regional elections.
The Spanish prime minister said he wanted to see an end to the "provisional and temporary situation, which is leading us nowhere".