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EU to Ditch Dollar in Iran Trade

by Oui Wed May 16th, 2018 at 09:30:12 PM EST

Ahead of a summit of EU leaders, Donald Tusk criticizes Trump for US actions | DW |

The EU is hoping that Iran will continue to obey the rules of the agreement as long as enough of the economic benefits promised in the deal are preserved. The Iran nuclear deal aims to prevent Tehran from developing a nuclear bomb.

"I would like our debate to reconfirm without any doubt that as long as Iran respects the provisions of the deal, the EU will also respect it," Tusk said.

But the EU's hopes have been complicated by the fact that European companies would also be exposed to US sanctions imposed on anyone doing business in Iran.

Continued below the fold ...

EU Pledges Steps to Salvage Iran Oil Shipments `Within Weeks' | Bloomberg |

The European Union set out to identify "practical solutions" for salvaging the Iran nuclear accord within weeks, as the bloc strives to contain the fallout from President Donald Trump's decision to pull the plug from the landmark deal.

Technical experts from both sides were commissioned to find ways to maintain oil shipments and to protect European companies doing business with Iran, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini told reporters in Brussels late on Tuesday. The experts will also propose ways to avert disruptions in air, sea and land transport from and to Iran and keep channels open for "effective banking transactions."

While members of the Trump administration have advised European companies to stop doing business with Iran now, Mogherini said the European aim was "maintaining and deepening economic relations with Iran."

"If we want to save this deal, which is not an easy exercise, we know that the sooner we do it then the easier it will be," Mogherini said after meeting the foreign ministers of the U.K., France, Germany and Iran in Brussels. Both the EU and Iran have vowed to keep implementing the deal, despite the threat of U.S. sanctions after Trump's decision to withdraw.

EU leaders will debate their reaction over a dinner meeting in Sofia on Wednesday, while the bloc's executive arm will discuss the technical preparations in a meeting also on Wednesday.

FM Javad Zarif: Constructive meeting with EU High Rep & E3 ministers in Brussels
EU plans to ditch dollar for Iran oil payments: Report

EU to reactivate 'blocking statute' against US sanctions on Iran for European firms | DW |

Juncker's announcement came during the second day of an EU reunion in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia, which had already been marked by sharp criticism from European leaders over American President Donald Trump's decision to pull the US out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

    • "As the European Commission we have the duty to protect European companies. We now need to act and this is why we are launching the process to activate the 'blocking statute' from 1996."
    • The EU law would be launched Friday morning at 10:30 a.m. local time (0700 GMT).
    • European leaders "also decided to allow the European Investment Bank to facilitate European companies' investment in Iran" and said the Commission would continue to cooperate with Iran.  

The Helms-Burton Blocking Statute of the European Union

After the U.S. Congress passed the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) Act ("Helms-Burton Act") in March of 1996, the Council of the European Union ("Council"), during its July 15, 1996 session, identified a range of measures that the European Union could deploy in response to the darnage EU companies incurred from the implementation of the Helms-Burton Act. The Council identified the introduction oflegislation by the European Union with the objective of neutralizing the extra-territorial effects of the U.S. legislation.

President Barack Obama signed a memorandum to suspend the provisions of title III of the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) Act of 1996

Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) Act of 1996
A Cuban exile - the Case of Elián González

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Thu May 17th, 2018 at 05:36:36 PM EST
The United States and Western allies may not like democracy after all ... recently in Lebanon, Saudi darling Hariri lost in new elections for seats in parliament. Now in Iraq, the election result spoiled by low turnout of 44%, compared to 60% in 2014.

US and Iran wade in as talks begin on new Iraq government | The Natioanl - UAE |

Negotiations were under way between Iraqi politicians on Wednesday after the country's first election since the fall of ISIS delivered a shock third place result for Haider Al Abadi, the incumbent prime minister long backed by the US.

Preliminary results showed that populist cleric Moqtada Al Sadr, an Iraqi nationalist who has distanced himself from neighbouring states, was set to win the most seats in parliament. His "Marching Towards Reform" alliance with Iraq's communists tapped into popular anger over corruption and foreign meddling.

The Shiite cleric has ruled himself out of the premiership. Instead, he is looking to be the kingmaker who can cobble together a technocratic government from a dozen parties. But with his alliance falling short of a majority, lengthy wrangling in Baghdad is expected as rival parties bid to forge a governing coalition.

The moves to shore up a coalition government became an international affair, as Brett McGurk, the White House special representative in the fight against ISIS, arrived in Baghdad for talks to broker a deal favourable to Washington. Also reported to be in the Iraqi capital was Qasem Soleimani, the shadowy spy chief who leads the foreign wing of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) known as the Quds Forces.

The visits are a mark of the importance both America and Iran placed on the outcome of the vote.

The US has supported Mr Al Abadi's government for more than three years, helping him and Iraq's armed forces defeat ISIS after the militant group seized control of swathes of northern and western Iraqi territory in 2014. Iran sponsors numerous Shiite militias who make up the majority of the government-aligned Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF).

Firebrand cleric holds the cards in governance of Iraq

Iran-Turkey cooperation must stop escalation of tensions in Syria: Rouhani
Syria: Direct conflict between Iran and Israel would involve the United States and Russia

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Thu May 17th, 2018 at 07:50:31 PM EST
By ending the Iran deal, Trump has put America on the path to war | The Guardian - Opinion |

However, if we are genuinely concerned about these Iranian policies, as I am, this is the worst possible course. It will make addressing all of these other issues harder. Unfortunately, we heard no strategy from Trump when he announced his decision, just the usual bluster.

Bluster and Iran-bashing will not get us to a better future. We need to continue to try to talk with Iran's government, seek a better relationship with the Iranian people, and a more constructive role for Iran in the region. Trump's approach makes achieving those goals more difficult. It has already emboldened the regime's hardliners, who are much more comfortable dealing with a hostile America than with a reasonable, peace-seeking one.

After 17 years of war in Afghanistan and 15 years of war in Iraq, the American people do not want to be engaged in never-ending wars in the Middle East. They do not want to drawn into a Sunni-Shia, Saudi Arabia-Iran regional conflict. But I am deeply concerned that that is exactly where President Trump is taking us. If anyone were inclined to dismiss those concerns, I would remind them that Trump's newly installed national security adviser, John Bolton, wrote an article a few years ago entitled "To Stop Iran's Bomb, Bomb Iran". By withdrawing from the nuclear agreement, and making clear their goal of escalation, Trump and his administration seem to be creating their own excuse for doing exactly that.

We should remember that the road to the Iraq war did not simply begin in 2003. It was laid down brick by brick over a number of years with policy decisions that might have seemed relatively small at the time, but that ultimately led us to the worst foreign policy blunder in our history. The Iraq war had enormous unintended consequences that we are still dealing with today, and will be for many years to come. Indeed, one of those unintended consequences was the empowering of Iran in Iraq and elsewhere around the region.

It is folly to imagine that, having unleashed these problems through the misuse of military force, we can solve them in the same way. Yet President Trump's bellicose speech last week clearly seemed to shift American policy toward the same goal of regime change that underlay the Iraq war. Real American leadership, and real American power, is not shown by our ability to blow things up, but by our ability to bring parties together, to forge international consensus around shared problems, and then to mobilize that consensus to address those problems.

Israel Is Not Our Partner for Middle East Peace
Bernie's Socialism and Kibbutz Experience of '63

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Thu May 17th, 2018 at 08:01:15 PM EST

Qatari Investor: Michael Cohen Asked Me for $1 Million

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Fri May 18th, 2018 at 07:45:47 AM EST
'Stormy Daniels Day': West Hollywood to award porn star a key to the city

Officials of the city, bordering Beverly Hills and considered a prominent LGBT community, said in a release they chose to recognize Daniels because in "these politically tumultuous times," she has "proven herself to be a profile in courage by speaking truth to power even under threats to her safety and extreme intimidation."

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed May 23rd, 2018 at 04:21:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Truth Dig | Sex Workers Go Mainstream
Alana Evans, interviewed by Megyn [$20M-SURVIVOR] Kelly [!], had been in Lake Tahoe when Stormy Daniels met Donald Trump and was at least an audio witness that they were in a hotel room together. When Kelly asked if Evans knew any of the specifics of what took place, Ms. Evans blushed like a young Midwest housewife and had to be coaxed into repeating what Stormy Daniels told her about "Donald Trump chasing me around the bedroom in his tighty whities."
"It's harder than ever to paint porn as uniquely exploitative."
If appointed UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for the Safeguarding of Film
Counterpunch | #MeToo is a Cultural Workaround to a Legal Failure
What even many thoughtful men fail to understand is that #MeToo is not, nor does it seek to be, a legal process. It is a cultural reaction to a legal system that fails women accusers. It is a workaround. It is a drive to change what constitutes acceptable behavior on a date, at the office, in the bedroom. It has nothing to do with due process -- because due process hasn't worked for women victims.
97% [?] of rapists get away scot-free, a higher percentage than for other crimes.
If enlisted.
The Hill | NYPD officials say they are prepared to arrest Harvey Weinstein, since Mar 2017
The U.S. attorney's office for the Southern District of New York is probing whether Weinstein got women to cross state lines* for the purpose of committing a sex crime, an offense that could lead to federal charges.
If trafficking by train, plane, automobile, wire or phone

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed May 23rd, 2018 at 09:39:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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