Iran - Q&A - Excerpts from the daily press briefing (22.05.18)

Q - Do you believe that the 12 demands made yesterday by the American secretary of state with respect to Iran provide a realistic basis for negotiation?

A - President Macron reaffirmed on Thursday in Sofia that Europe is united and determined to take action to restore peace and stability in the Middle East.

To achieve that, we must be sure that Iran will never possess a nuclear weapon. This is the goal that we have been working toward since the discovery of Iran’s clandestine nuclear program in 2002 which resulted in the Iranian nuclear deal in 2015. Regional and international security and the integrity of the nuclear non-proliferation regime are at stake. That’s why France will support the agreement as long as Iran continues to strictly implement the nuclear provisions. This is what will make it possible to avoid an escalation of tensions.

The companies that wish to do so must be able to continue their activities in Iran. This is in exchange for Iran’s commitment to upholding its nuclear obligations. This is why Jean-Yves Le Drian and Bruno Le Maire received the French firms concerned last week in Paris. The EU is also taking action and announced measures to this effect. The other parties remaining in the agreement must also do their part.

But beyond the nuclear issues, we remain concerned by Iran’s ballistic missile activities and Iran’s growing military presence – direct and indirect - in the Middle East. This is why we want to establish a comprehensive framework for negotiations with Iran. We want Iran to understand the need for a cooperative approach.

We will be in contact about this issue with the participants to the nuclear agreement, including Iran, Russia and China and with all our partners, including our American and European partners and the countries in the region.