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Iran rebuffs French FM demands to curb missiles on Tehran visit

08 March 2018

A collapse of the Iran nuclear deal would be a "great loss", the United Nations atomic watchdog's chief warned U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday, giving a wide-ranging defence of the accord and his agency's work under it.

Since taking office, Trump has accused Iran of committing "multiple violations" under the JCPOA and threatened to withdraw the United States from the agreement.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which is tasked with monitoring Iran's compliance with its obligation, has verified Iran's compliance with the deal in 10 reports.

He official said that those machines could be brought back into full service if the 2015 nuclear deal - formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action - were to collapse.

'There are ballistic programmes of missiles that can reach several thousand kilometres which are not compatible with UN Security Council resolutions and exceed the sole need of defending Iran's borders, ' Jean-Yves Le Drian told the Journal du Dimanche newspaper.

The visit is taking place as concerns over the fate of Iran's nuclear deal are growing.

The prime minister said those problems need to be addressed, though he stressed that that "did not necessarily mean altering the JCPOA, but changing the situation", a reference to his call on world powers to contain Iranian aggression beyond the confines of the deal.

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That continued with Iran's armed forces spokesman Gen. Masoud Jazayeri, who this weekend said Tehran only would give up its missiles when the West abandons nuclear weapons.

France has ballistic missiles with ranges of more than 6,000 kilometres, which can be launched from submarines, but Le Drian said Iran was risking fresh sanctions if it did not curb its missile programme, which is now limited to 2,000 kilometres.

"Tehran and Paris have started positive banking cooperation and the French companies' investment in Iran has been increased after the JCPOA took effect", he added.

"Any move to undermine the JCPOA would result in the loss of credibility of other global agreements", said Shamkhani.

French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday voiced his support for the 2015 nuclear deal which limited Iran's nuclear activities in returns for the lift of western sanctions against Tehran.

Iran's ballistic missile capacity and position "worries us enormously", Le Drian said last week at a news conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Iranian university students gathered at Tehran's worldwide Mehrabad airport at on Sunday night to protest Le Drian's visit and his remarks against the country's missile program, calling on Tehran to continue progress "in defense fields".

Iran rebuffs French FM demands to curb missiles on Tehran visit