The straight answer is that it is very complicated now. I had a long dinner with my French counterpart, Jean-Yves Le Drian, on Sunday night in Farmleigh and we spent a lot of time talking about this because France is trying to give leadership in this area to try to keep this deal alive, despite the current difficulties.
The Deputy will have seen my statement of 8 May on behalf of the Government, setting out our views and expressing our disappointment with the decision of the United States. Similar statements were issued by the European Union and by other partners.
I have stated clearly in public that the Iran nuclear agreement was a significant diplomatic achievement in the area of non-proliferation, that it was delivering as intended, and that, as verified by the International Atomic Energy Agency, Iran had implemented its commitments under the agreement. These views were clearly conveyed to the US Government on a number of occasions, including in recent weeks by President Macron and Chancellor Merkel, and also by the British Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, although not directly to President Trump.
It is a matter of great regret that the US has decided to take a different approach from the EU. Speaking for the EU, High Representative Mogherini has emphasised that the agreement was a multilateral one and that all other signatories to it have expressed a hope that it can continue to be implemented. The EU signatories to the agreement, and other parties, have held initial meetings with Iran to discuss that possibility. Ireland will fully support that objective, although the difficulties should not be underestimated.
Looking at the broader picture, Ireland's foreign policy is deeply anchored in the values set out in the Constitution. Those are reflected also in the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and in the principles which underpin the European Union. Ireland is committed to a rules-based international order and to a multilateral approach to global issues.
Having been Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Deputy Howlin will know the difficulties of maintaining global commerce if the US is imposing sanctions. We have seen that with Aughinish Alumina recently following sanctions affecting one oligarch in Russia. Countries will need to work together to keep this agreement alive from an Iranian perspective.