All tagged European Union
◢ Soaring tensions with Iran following attacks on tankers and drones prompted the Trump administration to call for a coalition of allies to protect ships passing through the Persian Gulf. This week, U.S. partners including the U.K. and France essentially asked to be counted out.
◢ As European Union governments scramble to save the Iran nuclear accord from U.S. efforts to scuttle it, the mood in diplomatic circles has blackened. Then suddenly, U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo lands in Brussels with little warning. After a cool initial reception to the unscheduled drop-in, Pompeo began meetings with European counterparts to address Iran’s “threatening actions and statements.”
◢ No one spelled out Europe’s predicament over the escalating stand-off between the U.S. and Iran quite as bluntly as Russia. It’s up to “the Europeans, who committed to find a solution to the problem created by the Americans, to fulfill their promise,’’ said Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, during a joint news conference in Moscow with his Iranian opposite, Mohammad Zarif.
◢ Responding to the devastating floods that have recently affected northern and south western parts of Iran, the European Commission has announced an initial amount of EUR 1.2 million of emergency funding to assist the most vulnerable communities.
◢ A payment mechanism the EU hopes will save the Iran nuclear deal by bypassing US sanctions is ready, diplomats said Monday, but is held up by disagreements among European countries. The "Special Purpose Vehicle" is being put together by Germany, France and Britain, the European signatories to the 2015 accord that curbed Tehran's nuclear ambitions in return for sanctions reilef.