French FM starts controversial meetings in Tehran
Baku, Azerbaijan, March 5
By Gazenfer Hamidov – Trend:
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, who arrived in Tehran March 5 morning, has started negotiations with senior Iranian officials.
In the first round of talks, Le Drian held a meeting with Ali Shamkhani, secretary of the Supreme National Security Council of Iran, the Iranian media reported without unveiling further details.
The top French diplomat is scheduled to hold talks with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, and President Hassan Rouhani during the day-long visit.
The visit is taking place as concerns over the fate of Iran's nuclear deal are growing. In early March, Reuters reported that European powers and Iran have started talks over Tehran’s role in the Middle East and will meet again this month in Italy as part of efforts to prove to US President Donald Trump that they are meeting his concerns over the 2015 nuclear deal.
A day before Le Drian’s visit to Tehran, France’s foreign ministry said that Iran’s ballistic missile program was a major concern.
The ministry said it wanted Iran to contribute in a “positive” manner to solving crises in the Middle East.