UPDATE 1-France regrets U.S. resolution on Fordow, rebukes Iran

(Provides particulars, context)

PARIS, Nov 19 (Reuters) – France lamented on Tuesday a U.S. resolution to finish a sanctions waiver associated to Iran’s Fordow nuclear facility, but in addition mentioned it feared Tehran’s newest violations of a 2015 deal might result in severe nuclear proliferation.

“We remorse the choice of america, following Iran’s resumption of enrichment on the Fordow web site, to terminate an exemption that might facilitate the conduct of civilian initiatives on this web site,” overseas ministry spokeswoman Agnes von der Muhll advised reporters in a web based briefing.

The Trump administration, which final yr pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal and re-imposed sanctions on Tehran, had till Monday let the work go ahead on the Fordow gas enrichment plant by issuing waivers to sanctions that bar non-U.S. companies from coping with the Atomic Power Group of Iran (AEOI).

The U.N. atomic watchdog and Iran itself mentioned this month Tehran is once more enriching uranium on the delicate web site, which Iran hid from U.N. non-proliferation inspectors till its publicity in 2009.

“France is extraordinarily involved by Iran’s non-compliance with its nuclear obligations, which can have severe penalties for proliferation,” von der Muhll mentioned a day after Iran breached one other restrict within the nuclear deal by accumulating barely greater than 130 tonnes of heavy water.

“Iran’s resumption of enrichment actions on the Fordow web site, with doubtlessly severe proliferation penalties, is a brand new step that marks a regrettable acceleration of Iran’s withdrawal from the Vienna settlement.”

Because the deal has slowly eroded, France, Britain and Germany have been torn between attempting to put it aside and responding to Iran’s breaches.

French officers have in latest weeks stepped up efforts to attempt to deliver Tehran and Washington again to the negotiating desk, however with little signal of success.

They’re attempting to persuade Iran to return on a raft of choices violating the accord and the United Nations to start lifting some sanctions which have strangled Iran’s financial system.

“France calls on Iran to conform absolutely with the settlement directly,” von der Muhll mentioned, including that Paris was persevering with its efforts to defuse tensions. (Reporting by John Irish; Modifying by Leigh Thomas and Andrew Cawthorne)

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