Published On: Mon, Jan 18th, 2016

Iran’s Rouhani to visit Italy, France next week, first Europe trip after sanctions lifted

Hassan Rouhani

 

Iran’s hopes for international rehabilitation were dealt a blow after the US imposed fresh sanctions on 11 companies and individuals connected to Iran’s ballistic missile programme just a day after lifting nuclear sanctions. Hours earlier, Iran had released four Americans as part of a highly sensitive prisoner swap.

Iran hit back, vowing to upgrade its missile programme, which it said did not violate international law. The US sells tens of billions of dollars of advanced weapons to countries in the region each year and its move lacks legal and moral legitimacy, a foreign ministry statement said.

FT writer David Gardner says Iran now has an opportunity to become a force for stability in a region in meltdown. But President Hassan Rouhani’s hope that the country will attract up to $50bn worth of international investment and finance in the coming year could be complicated by a lack of clarity which will keep European companies away. Here is everything you need to know about Implementation Day in Iran.

Oil, meanwhile, fell below $28 a barrel for the first time since December 2003 amid fears that the lifting of sanctions will exacerbate the oil glut. (FT)

Reuters report that Iranian President Hassan Rouhani will visit Italy and France next week on his first trip to Europe since the lifting of sanctions against his country, a diplomatic source said Reuters on Monday

The source said Rouhani would be in Italy on Jan. 25-26 and leave for Paris on Jan. 27. On his first day in Italy he will meet the country’s president, prime minister and business leaders. He is scheduled to meet Pope Francis on the second day, the source said.

The visits were originally due to take place in November but were canceled after the attacks by Islamist militants in Paris.

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