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Germany says preserving Iran nuclear deal is a top priority

FILE PHOTO: A video projection is seen on the face of Iran's President Hassan Rouhani as he arrives for a news conference during the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, U.S. September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Stephanie Keith/File Photo

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany’s top priority regarding Iran is to preserve the existing international nuclear deal, a foreign ministry spokesman said, as a May 12 deadline neared for the United States to decide on restoring U.S. sanctions on Tehran.

Spokesman Rainer Breul was responding to a question about French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposal that concerns over the agreement could be addressed with a supplementary deal, a suggestion that Germany would look at carefully, he said.

“For us, the position stays clear - the highest priority is keeping the nuclear agreement and full implementation on all sides,” he said.

“The nuclear agreement was negotiated with seven countries and the EU and can’t be renegotiated or replaced on a whim, but it is also clear that beyond the nuclear agreement we want to make sure that Iran’s nuclear programme serves exclusively peaceful purposes,” he said.

Reporting by Markus Wacket and Thomas Escritt; Editing by Richard Balmforth; Writing by Madeline Chambers