Russian FM calls US election meddling claims ‘blabber’

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov talks at the Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany, February 17, 2018. (Reuters)
Updated 17 February 2018
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Russian FM calls US election meddling claims ‘blabber’

MUNICH: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Saturday dismissed as “blabber” accusations that Moscow had interfered in the US election that brought President Donald Trump to power.
“So as long as we don’t see facts, everything else is blabber,” Lavrov said at the Munich Security Conference, a day after the US indicted 13 Russians for running a secret campaign to sway the 2016 vote.


UK’s Hunt to make first visit to Iran

Britain's Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt leaves 10 Downing Street in London on November 14, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 40 min 16 sec ago
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UK’s Hunt to make first visit to Iran

  • Jeremy Hunt: “The Iran nuclear deal remains a vital component of stability in the Middle East by eliminating the threat of a nuclearised Iran. It needs 100 percent compliance though to survive”

LONDON: British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt will visit Iran for the first time on Monday for talks with the Iranian government on issues including the future of the 2015 nuclear deal, his office said in a statement.
In May, US President Donald Trump abandoned the deal, negotiated with five other world powers during Democratic President Barack Obama’s administration, and earlier this month the United States restored sanctions targeting Iran’s oil, banking and transportation sectors.
Hunt’s office said he would meet Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and would stress that the UK is committed to the nuclear deal as long as Iran sticks to its terms. He will also discuss European efforts to maintain nuclear-related sanctions relief.
“The Iran nuclear deal remains a vital component of stability in the Middle East by eliminating the threat of a nuclearised Iran. It needs 100 percent compliance though to survive,” Hunt said in a statement ahead of the visit.
“We will stick to our side of the bargain as long as Iran does. But we also need to see an end to destabilising activity by Iran in the rest of the region if we are going to tackle the root causes of the challenges the region faces.”
Hunt will also discuss Iran’s role in the conflicts in Syria and Yemen, his office said, and press Iran on its human rights record, calling for the immediate release of detained British-Iranian dual nationals where there are humanitarian grounds to do so.
“I arrive in Iran with a clear message for the country’s leaders: putting innocent people in prison cannot and must not be used as a tool of diplomatic leverage,” he said.