Germany and UK urge Iran against aggressive steps

One year after the US pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal, the Islamic Republic is now threatening to scale back its commitments to Russia.

Activists gather at a Capitol Hill rally against the Iran nuclear deal in Washington September 9, 2015 (photo credit: REUTERS)
Activists gather at a Capitol Hill rally against the Iran nuclear deal in Washington September 9, 2015
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Germany regrets statements made by the Iranian government and urges Tehran not to take any aggressive steps, a government spokesman said on Wednesday after Iran said it was scaling back curbs to its nuclear program under a 2015 deal.
A German Foreign Ministry spokesman added that Berlin wants to keep the Iran nuclear deal, and said Berlin would fully stick to its commitments as long as Iran does the same.
Britain also said said Iran would face consequences if it backed away from its nuclear deal, following Tehran's announcement on Wednesday that it was scaling back curbs to its nuclear program that had been agreed under a 2015 deal with world powers.
"Today's announcement from Tehran is ... an unwelcome step," junior foreign office minister Mark Field told Britain's parliament. "We are not at this stage talking about reimposing sanctions, but one has to remember that they were of course lifted in exchange for the nuclear restrictions."
A year after Washington pulled out of the nuclear deal, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani unveiled measures that do not appear to violate its terms yet, but could do so in the future if Iran were to persist on the course he set out.
"Should Iran cease meeting its nuclear commitments, there would of course be consequences," Field said.
The Kremlin said on Wednesday that Iran had been provoked into rolling back some of the terms of a 2015 nuclear deal due to external pressure which it blamed on the United States.
Iran said earlier on Wednesday it had started scaling back parts of its commitments under the deal and threatened to do more if world powers did not protect it from US sanctions, a year after Washington pulled out of the pact.
"President Putin has repeatedly spoken of the consequences of unthought-out steps regarding Iran and by that I mean the decision taken by Washington (to quit the deal). Now we are seeing those consequences are starting to happen," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call.
Peskov was speaking as talks in Moscow between Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov got underway.
Russia expects the 2015 Iran nuclear deal's European signatories to fulfill their obligations under the pact, Lavrov said Wednesday. Lavrov told reporters the situation around the nuclear deal was making it hard for Tehran to fulfill its obligations.
Peskov said Russia wanted to keep the nuclear deal alive and that its diplomats were doing all they could behind the scenes in talks with European officials to try to save it.
Asked if Russia might be ready to join other countries in imposing new sanctions against Iran over its partial roll back on the deal, Peskov said:
"For now, we need to soberly analyze the situation and exchange views on this. The situation is serious."