European Times

News from the European Union

Russia-Iran work to neutralise sanctions

Iran and Russia flags

Russia-Iran work to neutralise sanctions at a meeting on Tuesday in Moscow between the two Foreign Ministers.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says Moscow has received written guarantees from Washington that Western sanctions on Russia over Ukraine will not affect cooperation with Iran within the framework of the 2015 nuclear deal.

Russia-Iran work to neutralise sanctions at a meeting on Tuesday in Moscow between the two Foreign Ministers.
The two foreign ministers meeting in Moscow to discuss the Vienna agreement

Lavrov’s remarks on Tuesday – delivered as he hosted his Iranian counterpart, Hossein Amirabdollahian, for talks in the Russian capital – could potentially signal that Russia’s demand that the sanctions would not impede its future dealings with Iran has been fulfilled, reports Al Jazeera.

The Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported on the meeting between Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.

Russian demand for guarantees that Tehran-Moscow trade ties would be exempt from future US and Western Ukraine-related sanctions if the JCPOA was to be revived was an important issues of discussion between Amirabdollahian and Lavrov on Tuesday.

Drafting an agreement between Tehran and Moscow to determine the principles of cooperation between the two countries in the international arena was another important issues discussed by the two top diplomats.

Amid the warmest stage of the talks in Vienna, Lavrov raised a new demand from the Russian side urging the US to give guarantee that future Ukraine-related sanctions wouldn’t affect Tehran-Moscow trade ties.

The demand drew attentions, giving opportunity to the US and the Western participants to downgrade all the remaining disagreements to Russia’s new condition and ignore realization of Iran’s requests.

It was predictable that escalation between US and Russia over the war in Ukraine could impact talks in Vienna. In the meantime, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell asked for a pause in the talks so that the teams could return to capitals.

Meanwhile, Beijing has pledged support for Tehran after talks to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal ground to a halt amid soaring tensions between Russia and the West over the Ukraine war.

Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Tuesday said China would help push for an early conclusion to the months-long nuclear negotiations in Vienna, in his first comments after talks were called off last week over a reported last-minute demand by Russia.

“China always supports an early agreement on resuming compliance with the nuclear deal, and is open to and supportive of efforts to this end,” Wang told his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in a phone conversation, according to Xinhua.

Amirabdollahian took the opportunity to meet Lavrov to discuss developments in Vienna talks and they seemed to have reached a conclusion when they appeared before reporters.

The Russian foreign minister said that the US tries to blame Moscow for the delay in Vienna talks, but this was a lie as the deal was not agreed upon in many other capitals.

He also talked of a new draft deal between Iran and Russia which was prepared on Iran’s initiative and Russia has shown eagerness to sign it.

The developments show that Iran and Russia have managed to form an alliance so that they can organize all-inclusive cooperation and hold real effective consultations in the highest levels. This can solve any complicated issue, including Vienna talks, and keep both countries focused on bilateral cooperation.

Amirabdollahian assured when speaking to reporters that Russia wouldn’t be an obstacle to a deal in Vienna and that there was no link between the war in Ukraine and the talks in the Austrian capital.

He hoped that the US would walk back its excessive demands as the talks have reached homestretch, so that a good deal can be obtained with the consent of all participants.

Meanwhile Bloomberg reports that The United Arab Emirates and Russia discussed the importance of stable energy markets on Thursday 17th March, the UAE’s foreign minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed said during a visit to Moscow. 

“We discussed global energy supplies and the essential goods markets as well as the importance of energy and food stability for the global economy,” he said after meeting with his counterpart Sergei Lavrov. The UAE and Russia are both part of the OPEC+ alliance.