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Reasons behind Zarif’s visit to Japan

  • May 16, 2019
  • , NHK WORLD
  • English Press
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s three-day visit to Japan was announced on Wednesday, the day he arrived. The hastily arranged visit appears to be part of Iran’s efforts to boost cooperation with the international community in the face of increasing pressure from the United States.

 

The US unilaterally pulled out of the 2015 nuclear deal last year. It recently banned all countries from importing Iranian crude oil and dispatched a carrier strike group and B-52 bombers to the Middle East.

 

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said last week that his country would restart part of its nuclear activity if Iran’s interests are not protected against US sanctions.

 

Zarif visited Russia and India before travelling to Japan.

 

He has been explaining that the US hardline stance has forced Iran to take countermeasures.

 

Zarif is also expected to seek Japan’s cooperation as it plans to hold negotiations with European nations in an effort to keep the nuclear deal alive. Japan has consistently supported the agreement.

 

Zarif may also ask Japan to maintain trade with Iran where possible, despite the tightening of US economic sanctions.

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