Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron attend a signing ceremony after the talks in St. Petersburg, Russia May 24, 2018.
(photo credit: GRIGORY DUKOR / REUTERS)
ST PETERSBURG - President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that Russia appreciated efforts by Europe to save the Iran nuclear deal despite the withdrawal of the United States and warned of "lamentable consequences" if it was not preserved.
Putin made the comment in a news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron, who has proposed broadening talks with Tehran to cover Iran's ballistics program and its role in the Middle East.
Macron met Putin seeking to win concessions on Syria, Iran and Ukraine, after returning largely empty-handed from a state visit to the United States.
Macron said France and Russia agreed on creating a coordination mechanism between world powers to push ahead with finding a political solution in Syria, and that the focus should be on a new constitution and setting up elections that would include all Syrians.
"We need to be talking about the situation after the war. The key is to build a stable Syria," Macron said.
He and Putin said they hoped the United States and North Korea would continue working towards denuclearizing the Korean peninsula after US President Donald Trump called off a planned summit.
Macron said he hoped Trump's move "was just a glitch in a process that should be continued."