Germany calls for de-escalation in Middle East

Germany calls for de-escalation in Middle East

Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman claimed they have destroyed "almost all" of Iran's military infrastructure in Syria in response to the rocket attacks.

But the foreign policy chief of Merkel's party, Norbert Roettgen, warned that it would be hard to adhere to the accord without the United States as European companies that continue to do business in Iran could be hit with heavy U.S. sanctions.

Mr Macron echoed Mrs Merkel's criticisms of the U.S. decision to leave the nuclear deal and said that Europe should show greater unity and strength to become the main guarantor of stability in the Middle East. "And I can only call on all sides to exercise restraint here", Merkel added.

The leaders' remarks come just after President Donald Trump announced on Tuesday that the US would withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), better known as the Iran nuclear deal.

"We must succeed in building our own sovereignty, which in this region will be the guarantor of stability", he said. Most recently, Trump's decision to pull out of a major nuclear energy and arms control deal with Iran has earned him criticism from Germany and other European nations including Russian Federation, who support the deal. "We proceed from the fact that all issues should be solved through dialogue", Lavrov said at a press conference, adding that Moscow had warned Israel to avoid "all actions that could be seen as provocative".

Responding to Trump's concerns that the 2015 agreement was too narrow, Macron said he wanted to push for a wider deal covering Iran's ballistics program and activities in the Middle East. "That is the task for the future". "But let's be honest: Europe is still in its infancy with regard to the common foreign policy". "Rather, Europe needs to take its fate into its own hands". "And it will be existentially necessary to make progress here because the nature of conflicts has completely changed since the end of the Cold War".

Macron echoed the call to flesh out Europe's common foreign and defense policy.

The BGA called on the USA authorities to make public as soon as possible information on how to deal with the new situation, so that companies can act appropriately.

"In Germany there can not be a perpetual fetish for budget and trade surpluses, because they are always made at the expense of certain others", Macron said, adding that a north-south divide between wealthy and poorer nations that emerged during the financial crisis should not be allowed to resurface.



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