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Sunday, August 02, 2015

French diplomat pressured to retract statement on Iran, but Representatives back original story

The US Embassy to France and the French Embassy to the United States have been running a full-court press claiming that French diplomat Jacques Audibert never said it would be helpful if Congress rejected the Iran nuclear sellout. But Representatives who were present at the meeting insist that Audibert said what was originally reported.
Reps. Paul Cook (R., Calif.) and Tom Marino (R., Pa.) released a joint statement on Friday confirming Audibert’s comments as described by Sanchez.
“We participated in the meeting and can confirm that Congresswoman Sanchez’s account of the meeting is accurate. We disagree with recent claims that seek to refute her account,” the lawmakers said in a statement provided to the Free Beacon.
The French Embassy continues to deny the report and worked furiously in conjunction with White House officials Thursday to downplay Audibert’s comments, sources said.
The French Embassy’s Twitter account issued a statement by Audibert, who also distanced himself from the report.
“During the meeting with the members of the US Congress on the 17th of July, I never said or suggested that a no vote from the Congress on the JCPOA might be helpful or lead to a better deal,” Audibert said in the statement. “I insisted repeatedly on the fact that the deal itself was the best possible.”
However, Audibert walked back his initial rejection of the report on Friday in an interview with French-language press.
When asked by European officials what would happen if Congress were to reject the deal, Audibert “told them that in my opinion, no European company would take the risk of going to do business in Iran, since it risks being subjected to US sanctions, as was recently the case of a large French bank. It’s obvious,” French press reported.
Audibert’s apparent support for a congressional no vote on the deal is said to have swayed some lawmakers to oppose the agreement.
You don't think the White House and the State Department would lie and pressure another country's diplomat to get the deal passed, do you? 

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