Pompeo to Meet with Putin in Russian Federation

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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (L) poses with Britain's Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt at the European Council in Brussels, Belgium, May 13, 2019.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is to visit Brussels on Monday to discuss "pressing matters" including Iran, a State Department official said Sunday.

According to a senior European diplomat, Pompeo decided to make the last-minute change because leaders from the European Union were already planning to meet to discuss recent developments in Iran.

Lavrov urged the Europeans on Monday to uphold the Iranian nuclear deal.

Britain's foreign minister, Jeremy Hunt, said the United Kingdom was anxious about the risk of accidental conflict between Iran and the US.

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"During your meeting with Vladimir Putin, it is critical that you warn him that any action to interfere in our elections will be met with an immediate and robust response", Schumer wrote in a letter to Pompeo, released on the former's Facebook and Twitter pages.

"What we need is a period of calm to make sure that everyone understands what the other side is thinking", Hunt said, adding that would share those concerns Monday with European partners and Pompeo.

Trump said that Putin had assured him that Russian Federation was not involved in Venezuela - directly contradicting Pompeo and other top officials who for weeks have demanded that Moscow stop backing leftist leader Nicolas Maduro, whom Washington is trying to topple.

EU foreign policy chief said the European Union supports the global nuclear deal with Iran and wants rival powers to avoid any further escalation over the issue. It comes as the Europeans struggle to keep financial supply lines open to Iran to offset the impact of USA sanctions on the Islamic republic's shattered economy.

Asked if Pompeo was blaming Iran for the attacks, Hook said: "We discussed. what seemed to be attacks on commercial vessels that were anchored".

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Trump's withdrawal from the 2015 Iran deal, which aims to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons, is strongly opposed by Britain, France and Germany, the European signatories to the accord, which the EU helped to negotiate.

"It is no secret that we have many areas of disagreement with the Russian government", a senior State Department official told reporters at a briefing Friday.

European powers said they would "reject any ultimatums", after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani last week gave them 60 days to ease the impact of sanctions imposed in the oil and banking sector in particular.

The Europeans have set up a complicated barter-type system to skirt direct financial transactions with Iran and so evade possible US sanctions.

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