April 12, 2018 / 6:13 PM / 3 months ago

Iran tells France not to be influenced by Saudi prince on nuclear deal

ANKARA (Reuters) - Iran urged France on Thursday not to be influenced by Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman over Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported.

French President Emmanuel Macron and Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman attend a press conference at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, April 10, 2018. Yoan Valat/Pool via Reuters

The statement came after the prince - who is also defence minister of Iran’s main regional rival - appeared to chide French President Emmanuel Macron this week for supporting the 2015 deal to lift most economic sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbs to Tehran’s nuclear programme.

“As one of the signatories of the deal, France should avoid being influenced by the adventurous Salman and avoid listening to Riyadh’s repetitive and false claims against the deal,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said.

Macron, speaking at a joint press conference with the prince in Paris on Tuesday, said he thought Iran’s regional influence needed to be checked but did not think the nuclear deal should be ripped up.

The prince responded: “I hope the president isn’t upset with me with what I am about to say, but we do not want to repeat the deal made in 1938 which resulted in the start of World War 2,” in an apparent reference to the Munich appeasement deal with Hitler.

Writing by Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Andrew Heavens

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