Accessibility links

Breaking News

German Foreign Minister To Visit Iran Next Week

Britain's Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt (L), German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian attend a meeting at the European Council in Brussels, Belgium, May 13, 2019.

Mediation efforts between the United States and Iran have received a boost with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas announcing plans to visit Iran to prevent the country from leaving the nuclear agreement.

The German foreign ministry announced June 6 that Maas will meet with the Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Monday during a Middle East tour.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is also going to Iran next week to attempt a mediation effort.

Maas will be the first German minister to visit Iran in two and a half years. One his advisors was in Iran two weeks ago to prepare the minister’s visit.

German foreign ministry sources told DPA this trip had irritated American officials.

On May 8 Iran announced that it is giving UK, France, Germany, China and Russia, the other signatories of the nuclear deal 60 days to fully meet their commitments under the nuclear deal. This means Iran expects unfettered trade in the face of U.S. sanctions. Otherwise, Tehran has threatened to reduce its implementation of the agreement, increasing uranium enrichment.

The three European powers have set up a special trade mechanism to help Iran trade with EU, but due to U.S. pressure the system has not become operational.