Speech: Foreign Secretary's comments to media in Brussels before the May 2018 E3 meeting on Iran


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Speaking to media, the Foreign Secretary said:

We’re here for the UK to obviously stand with our European friends and partners, France and Germany to show our commitment to the deal, to the Iran nuclear deal JCPoA. We think it has value even if America has decided to walk away, so we’ll be looking at a package of measures that we may be able to devise as Europeans, to encourage the Iranians to stay in the deal.

I want to stress, we are under no illusions about the stuff Iran gets up to in the region, in the Middle East. We have no illusions about Iran’s disruptive behaviour, but we think we can tackle those in other ways outside the JCPoA. So we can deal with the ICBMs question, with the ballistic missiles question; we think we can deal with the way Iran behaves in the region. That’s what we’ll be looking at in addition to the JCPoA. Today we are focussed on the JCPoA. And I will also want to stress, that I will be raising some of the difficult consular cases that the UK has right now with Iran.

One of the key things we will be talking about as the E3 – that’s France, Germany, and the UK – and with Federica Mogherini, and the EU Commission, is that we will be looking at all the ways we can come up with to protect legitimate UK and European businesses, who may want to trade with Iran, who do want to trade with Iran, and who have great plans to do that.

But we have to accept, we have to be realistic about the electrified rail, the live wire of American extra-territoriality, and how that can serve as a deterrent to businesses. And we have to be realistic about that as well. That doesn’t mean there aren’t things we can do. Thank you very much.

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