Russia: We are not ‘a fire brigade, we cannot save everything’ – Putin on collapsing Iran deal

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Russian President Vladimir Putin said “Russia is not a fire brigade, we cannot save everything that does not fully depend on us,” referring to the collapsing Iran nuclear deal. He was speaking at a joint press conference with his Austrian counterpart Alexander Van der Bellen in Sochi on Wednesday.

“We have played our part,” he said, referring to Russia’s role in helping get the deal signed in 2015.

“We are ready to play this positive role again, but it does not depend on us, it depends on all the players including the US, European countries and Iran,” Putin added.

“As soon as Iran takes the first steps in response, if it declares that it withdraws from something, the next day everyone will forget that the United States was the initiator of the destruction, and the blame for everything will be laid on Iran,” the Russian leader said.

The Austrian president in turn spoke of possible penalties to be imposed on European companies if they cooperate with Iran.

“All European companies that continue to cooperate with Iran will also be punished. But here you can put two and two together, to see how it will work. The US relationship with certain companies turns out to be more important than with Iran,” Bellen said.

Bellen also said that his country has no plans to withdraw from the Russian-led Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project as the country’s energy giant, OMV, has made huge investments in the enterprise.

Van der Bellen and Putin both took part in the opening ceremony of the Sochi Dialogue Forum, a platform for civilian representatives of the business and culture spheres of both countries to cooperate.

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