US Navy: Will Protect Commerce in Face of Iran Oil Threat

US Navy: Will Protect Commerce in Face of Iran Oil Threat

"Now we need to enter into the implementation stage", Zarif, speaking in Persian, told reporters gathered at the Austrian capital.

Iran has warned that it may walk away from the deal unless other signatories "guarantee" that it will continue to benefit.

Washington has threatened the JCPOA's remaining signatories with punitive measures if they engaged in trade and investment with Tehran.

The most punitive of the secondary United States sanctions is expected to snap back in November.

The US Navy stands ready to ensure free navigation and the flow of commerce, the US military's Central Command said on Thursday, after Iran's Revolutionary Guards warned they would block oil shipments through the Strait of Hormuz.

She added that the participants will work on the issues such as "the encouragement of further investments in Iran, the protection of economic operators for their investments and other commercial and financial activities in or in relation to Iran, the bringing together of private and public sector experts, the practical support for trade with and investment in Iran, the protection of companies from the extraterritorial effects of United States sanctions". "For August it seems a bit short, but we are trying to do it by November", he said.

He said he did not think this round of talks would end negatively but it was likely more negotiations would be needed on the issue.

Zarif made the remarks while addressing reporters in the Austrian capital Vienna on Friday following a meeting with his counterparts from Britain, France, Germany, China and Russian Federation for the first time since US President Donald Trump pulled Washington out from the nuclear accord, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, in May.

The meeting meeting lasted for two hours until around 12:00 GMT on Friday at the same hotel, where the deal was negotiated and signed in July 2015.

"They (Iran) must stop threatening to break their commitments to the nuclear deal", Jean-Yves Le Drian said.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini says world powers and Iran have agreed to continue talking, including on economic measures, over how to save the 2015 nuclear deal.

"We advise businesses that want to keep investing (in Iran), we want to keep payment systems open, and we want to build security through widening the mandate of the European Investment Bank", he said.

Also on Thursday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi urged all the remaining parties to stick to their obligations under the nuclear accord.

Zarif posted a statement on social media saying that his mandate at the meeting is to "forge practical solutions".

"If we have hope of future, we'll continue cooperation with Europe", Rouhani said.

The Iranian president said there was no action plan or "a clear method in the proposed package for the continuation of cooperation and, similar to the previous European Union statements, it only contained general commitments".

In exchange, UN-approved sanctions were lifted, and Tehran was allowed to resume trading oil and gas on the global market.

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