ISLAMABAD — French President Francois Hollande threw his weight Tuesday behind demands by Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf Arab monarchies that a prospective deal with Iran over its nuclear program come with guarantees of their security.
After talks in Riyadh, Hollande and Saudi King Salman issued a joint statement, saying any nuclear deal with Iran must be “robust, lasting, verifiable, undisputed and binding.”
“The agreement must not destabilize the security and stability of the region nor threaten the security and stability of Iran’s neighbors,” the statement said.
France is one of the permanent five members of the United Nations Security Council and a moving force within the European Union – the so-called P5+1 nations that are negotiating the deal.
The statement also echoed concerns that lifting economic sanctions against Iran, and the prospective release to it of $150 billion in frozen overseas assets, would allow Iran to increase funding to its allies and proxies in the Middle East.