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Germany Says Shares U.S. Goals On Iran

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (R) meets with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, at the Department of State, in Washington, October 3, 2018

German foreign minister on Wednesday told the United States that his country shared its goals on Iran even as the Europeans press ahead to save the 2015 nuclear deal threatened by US sanctions.

Heiko Maas met in Washington with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who has voiced strong opposition to European plans to preserve commercial ties with Iran.

"In the end, we pursue the same goals with respect to Iran," Maas told reporters after meeting Pompeo.

"We just have different paths that we want to follow," he said.

Maas said that Germany shared the U.S. concerns about Iran's ballistic missile program and believed Tehran should withdraw from Syria.

But Maas said that the end of the 2015 agreement would lead Iran to pursue a nuclear program with military purposes.

"This would create the danger of a military conflict in the region," Maas said.

President Donald Trump withdrew from the accord, vowing instead to target Iran aggressively and roll back its role in the region.

That European Union said last month that it was working on a legal entity through which businesses could trade with Iran and avoid US sanctions.

Germany's top diplomat is launching a yearlong, multimillion-dollar publicity campaign to woo Americans, as Berlin tries to figure out its rocky relationship with the Trump administration.

Maas will be kicking off a charm offensive, called "Wunderbar Together," that's aimed at winning over regular Americans with hundreds of Germany-focused events across the United States.

Reporting by AFP, Ap