Diplomacy

France: Nuke Deal Must Be “Robust” Enough to Convince Regional Allies

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius expressed fears that the terms of the deal currently being negotiated with Iran are insufficient to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear, and that the deal as it stands could lead to greater nuclear proliferation in the Middle East, The Times of Israel reported Saturday.

“France wants an agreement, but a robust one that really guarantees that Iran can have access to civilian nuclear power, but not the atomic bomb,” Fabius told Europe 1 radio on Saturday.

The French FM added that “if the accord is not sufficiently solid then regional countries would say it’s not serious enough, so we are also going to get the nuclear weapon, and that would lead to an extremely dangerous nuclear proliferation.”

The “regional countries” referred to are believed to be a reference to the Sunni Arab nations.

According to the Times, France was arguing against adhering to the upcoming end-of-March deadline for a political framework, which they believe puts pressure on Western negotiators to agree to a bad deal. This was reflected in a tweet from France’s ambassador to the United States, Gérard Araud.

On Friday, The Guardian reported that Fabius had instructed French negotiators to make no further concessions to Iran. Earlier last week, Fabius stated that while he wanted an agreement “important points remain which are not resolved.”

France scuttled an agreement prior to the Joint Plan of Action in November 2013, claiming that the the agreement was a “sucker’s deal.”

[Photo: Frédérick Moulin / YouTube ]