Merkel reaffirms commitment to Iran nuclear deal

Merkel: Europe can't count on US to protect us anymore

In a phone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel a day after a series of Israeli strikes, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said his country is not interested in starting new conflicts in the region.

"The main goal of these attacks, supported by the United States, is to divert public opinion from the behaviour of the American president (and) his decision to leave the agreement", added Boroujerdi, referring to President Donald Trump's decision this week to withdraw the United States from the 2015 Iran nuclear accord.

"Germany can't have a perpetual fetish about budget and trade surpluses, because they come at the expense of others", Macron said as he received the annual "Charlemagne Prize" from the city of Aachen in front of an audience including the German chancellor. "The escalations of the past few hours show us that it is truly about war and peace.

Let us not be weak", added the French president. "That is the task for the future".

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"We made the choice to build peace and stability in the Middle East", he said in a reference to the involvement of France, Germany and the United Kingdom in the Iran deal.

The statement said Merkel condemned the overnight attacks on Israeli positions "and called on Iran to contribute to de-escalation in the region".

Macron echoed Merkel, saying European nations should not allow "other major powers, including allies" to "put themselves in a situation to decide our diplomacy [and] security for us".

Le Drian said Monday in Berlin that "we will continue it independently of the American decision". "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".

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