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Hollande and Obama stress common Syria-Iran stance as French state visit nears end


Hollande and Obama stress common Syria-Iran stance as French state visit nears end

The French and American presidents have continued to stress their common ground as François Hollande’s state visit draws to a close.

Barack Obama said both had resolved to put more pressure on Russia and Iran over stopping the bloodshed in Syria.

The French leader tackled the thorny issue of data protection after the revelations of US spying exposed in the NSA scandal.

“We have worked towards cooperation which can enable the fight against terrorism and at the same time to respect principles. And we are making headway over this cooperation. And there is a mutual trust which has been restored and which should be based both on respect for each other’s country and also based on the protection of privacy,” François Hollande told a joint news conference in Washington.

President Obama said France and other allies were committed to enforcing existing sanctions on Iran over its nuclear programme.

“We don’t want new sanctions, because the ones we have in place are already squeezing Iran and brought them to the table. We also want to send a message to the Iranians that if they don’t resolve this broader issue of their nuclear program that there will be consequences – and that the sanction regime will not only stay in place but will likely be tightened in the event that these talks fail,” Obama said.

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