Iran has threatened to resume the nation’s nuclear weapons programme if Europe does not promise to buy Iranian oil and oppose Donald Trump’s threats of crippling US sanctions.

The 2015 Iran nuclear deal is now hanging in the balance after Tehran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei issued his demands to EU powers, which are likely to be rejected by the UK, France and Germany.

He said: “If Europeans hesitate in responding to out demands, Iran is entitled to resume its nuclear activities.”

Mr Khamenei made five demands to European countries, warning unless they were met Iran would resume its enrichment of uranium.

He said Iran could no longer have any dealings with the US, saying: “The Islamic Republic cannot deal with a government that easily violates an international treaty, withdraws its signature and in a theatrical show brags about its withdrawal on television.”

The supreme leader called on nations to “guarantee the total sales of Iran’s oil”, which means the continent will have to make up for any oil sales which have been cancelled because of US sanctions.

He said European banks “must guarantee business transactions with the Islamic Republic”.

Mr Khamenei called on EU nations to issue a new UN security council resolution to oppose President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the US out of the 2015 deal and its new list of demands.

In his final demand, he said Europeans “must guarantee it will not raise the issue of the Islamic Republic’s missiles and regional affairs”.

The warning comes just days after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo threatened to impose new penalties if Iran does not agree to make sweeping changes to its nuclear programme and withdraw itself from the Syrian civil war.

The White House warned it was ready to impose “the strongest sanctions in history”, creating further tensions between Washington and Tehran.

Earlier this month, US leader Mr Trump pulled the plug on 2015’s landmark nuclear pact between Tehran and six world powers.

The decision raised the risk of conflict in the Middle East, upsetting European allies and casting uncertainty over global oil supplies.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: “We have raised with the US the need to make allowance for continued economic ties between Europe and Iran.”

Source » express