Iran’s president warns European soldiers in the Middle East ‘could be in danger’

Middle East

Iran‘s president has today warned that European soldiers ‘could be in danger’ in a threat to the West after Britain, France and Germany ramped up pressure on Tehran over the faltering nuclear deal. 

Hassan Rouhani extended Iran’s threats to Europe after the three nations triggered the pact’s ‘dispute resolution mechanism’ over Iran’s failure to comply with the deal.  

‘Today, the American soldier is in danger, tomorrow the European soldier could be in danger,’ Rouhani said. 

Europe and Iran both say they want to save the deal but Tehran has been steadily abandoning its nuclear limits since Donald Trump pulled out of the pact in 2018. 

Iranian president Hassan Rouhani (pictured) has today warned that European soldiers 'could be in danger' after Britain, France and Germany ramped up pressure over the nuclear deal

Iranian president Hassan Rouhani (pictured) has today warned that European soldiers 'could be in danger' after Britain, France and Germany ramped up pressure over the nuclear deal

Iranian president Hassan Rouhani (pictured) has today warned that European soldiers ‘could be in danger’ after Britain, France and Germany ramped up pressure over the nuclear deal

Rouhani has also rejected Boris Johnson’s calls for a new nuclear deal renegotiated by Trump. 

‘This Mr Prime Minister in London, I don’t know how he thinks. He says let’s put aside the nuclear deal and put the Trump plan in action,’ Rouhani said.

‘If you take the wrong step, it will be to your detriment. Pick the right path. The right path is to return to the nuclear deal.’

Britain, France and Germany activated a dispute mechanism in the deal on Tuesday, which eventually could lead to the reimposing of UN sanctions. 

UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab told Parliament that Iran had ignored a series of restrictions on its nuclear production. 

‘Each of these actions were individually serious. Together, they now raise acute concerns about Iran’s nuclear ambitions,’ he said. 

Since quitting the deal in May 2018, Trump has reimposed sanctions on Iran that have crippled its economy.  

Tehran says it wants to keep the agreement but cannot do so indefinitely if it receives none of the promised economic benefits. 

Hassan Rouhani extended Iran's threats to Europe after the three nations triggered the pact's 'dispute resolution mechanism' over Iran's failure to comply with the deal (pictured: Rouhani inspecting nuclear facilities last year)

Hassan Rouhani extended Iran's threats to Europe after the three nations triggered the pact's 'dispute resolution mechanism' over Iran's failure to comply with the deal (pictured: Rouhani inspecting nuclear facilities last year)

Hassan Rouhani extended Iran’s threats to Europe after the three nations triggered the pact’s ‘dispute resolution mechanism’ over Iran’s failure to comply with the deal (pictured: Rouhani inspecting nuclear facilities last year) 

Europe and Iran both say they want to save the deal but Tehran has been steadily abandoning its nuclear limits since Donald Trump (pictured) pulled out of the pact in 2018

Europe and Iran both say they want to save the deal but Tehran has been steadily abandoning its nuclear limits since Donald Trump (pictured) pulled out of the pact in 2018

Europe and Iran both say they want to save the deal but Tehran has been steadily abandoning its nuclear limits since Donald Trump (pictured) pulled out of the pact in 2018

Iran has since taken a series of steps away from the deal in a bid to pressure European powers into helping it swerve the US sanctions.  

On July 1, it said it had increased its stockpile of enriched uranium to beyond the 300-kilogram limit set by the agreement. 

A week later, the Islamic Republic announced it had exceeded the deal’s uranium enrichment level of 3.67 per cent.   

Tehran had agreed that maximum enrichment level under the deal, which is far below the more than 90 per cent required for a nuclear weapon. 

However, once a country enriches uranium to around 20 per cent, scientists say the time needed to reach 90 per cent is halved.  

Tehran said it was abandoning the remaining limits earlier this month after the US drone strike which killed general Qassem Soleimani in Iraq. 

At the time the deal was signed, it was feared that Iran’s ‘breakout time’ to develop a nuclear weapon could be as low as two months.  

With the safeguards in place, it is now believed that Iran is at least a year away from acquiring such a weapon. 

Iran continues to insist that it is not seeking a nuclear weapon.   

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