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TEHRAN, Iran (AP) – Iran’s supreme leader has challenged President Donald Trump over America pulling out of nuclear deal, saying: “You cannot do a damn thing!”

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Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s comments came Wednesday as he met with a group of school teachers in Tehran, a day after Trump announced he was renewing sanctions on Iran.

Khamenei described Trump’s speech Tuesday night as having “over 10 lies,” without elaborating. He also said Trump’s remarks threatened Iran’s people and its theocratic government.

Under Iran’s Islamic Republic, Khamenei has final say on all state matters.

President Donald Trump signs a document reinstating sanctions against Iran after announcing the US withdrawal from the Iran Nuclear deal, in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House in Washington, D.C., on May 8, 2018. (Photo credit: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

The head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog says that Iran is fulfilling its commitments under the nuclear deal with world powers.

In a brief statement Wednesday, the International Atomic Energy Agency’s director-general, Yukiya Amano, said that “as of today, the IAEA can confirm that the nuclear-related commitments are being implemented by Iran.”

The Vienna-based IAEA was tasked with monitoring and verifying Iran’s adherence to the 2015 deal with six world powers. President Donald Trump announced the withdrawal of the U.S. on Tuesday.

Amano said: “Iran is subject to the world’s most robust nuclear verification regime under the (deal), which is a significant verification gain.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel says the U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal shows Europe will face increasing responsibility to secure peace and seek political solutions to conflicts.

Merkel underlined the commitment of Germany, France and Britain to stick with the accord.

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She said In a speech to members of her conservative party that “we have taken note with regret but also concern of this withdrawal by the United States of America, which is of course serious for such an agreement. We will remain committed to this agreement and try to do everything so that Iran also fulfills its commitments in the future.”

Merkel said that “yesterday showed us once again that we will face more responsibility in Europe, in foreign policy, in the area of securing peace, in the area of the political solutions we must find.”
China is expressing regret over President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Iran nuclear deal and says it remains committed to the landmark pact.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang told reporters Wednesday that “ensuring the integrity and sanctity” of the agreement was important for upholding the international nonproliferation regime and promoting peace and stability in the Middle East.

“We express regret over this decision made by the United States,” Geng said.

China is strongly invested in the agreement, and it’s unclear what effect Trump’s widely-criticized decision to re-impose sanctions will have on its relationship with Tehran.

China was involved in negotiating the agreement as one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council and has long been a close Iranian economic partner, buying about 1/3 of Iran’s oil shipments

Geng said China would “carry on the normal and transparent pragmatic cooperation with Iran on the basis of not violating our international obligation.”

Meanwhile, an official says that France and the European Union will work with the Trump administration to ensure European business interests in Iran are protected despite the U.S. decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.

An adviser to French President Emmanuel Macron said the U.S. decision to re-impose sanctions on Iran means European companies could be affected.

The adviser, who isn’t authorized to be publicly named, said “we are going to do everything with the businesses involved to safeguard our interests. We will have discussions at the European level.”

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He added that France wants to preserve the Iran nuclear deal as part of its effort to guarantee global security in the Middle East, and that Macron would speak with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani later Wednesday. One of the main topics of Macron’s trip to Russia in May will be the Iran nuclear deal.