Europe briefing: 6 stories to know about today

Europe briefing: 6 stories to know about today
Copyright Reuters
By Pascale Davies
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From Iran urging Europe to salvage the nuclear deal, to members of Pussy Riot arrested again after the World Cup interference, Euronews has the top European stories from this morning.

1. Iran says it's up to Europe to save the nuclear deal


Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday that it was up to Europe to preserve the nuclear agreement to maintain ties to Tehran. The US pulled out of the deal in May, a decision Rouhani dubbed "illegal".

European leaders have desperately tried to salvage the Iran nuclear deal, but France said earlier this month that it was unlikely European powers could do so before November.

Overnight, US President Donald Trump said he would “certainly meet” with his Iranian counterpart without preconditions, a move that was later rejected by Trump’s own administration and one of Rouhani’s advisers.

On Monday, the US will start to reimpose sanctions on Iran as a result of its withdrawal from the 2015 agreement.

Washington's announcement has already bitten into Iran's economy. See here for more details on how the country is facing the crisis.

2. EU slaps sanctions on six Russian groups over Crimea bridge

Sanctions were also handed down by the European Union on six Russian firms over their involvement in the construction of a new road-and-rail bridge linking Russia to the annexed Crimean peninsula, which the bloc says is illegal.

The EU has said the bridge violates Ukraine’s sovereignty and slapped asset freezes on the companies.


Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled the bridge in May.

In 2014, Russia seized Crimea from Ukraine during an uprising which toppled Ukraine’s pro-Russian president. The West condemned the move as an illegal annexation and handed down sanctions on Moscow.

3. Aid sector 'almost complicit' in sex scandal

In the UK, a report by MPs has said the aid sector is guilty of "complacency verging on complicity" over an "endemic" sex abuse scandal.

International Development Committee chairman Stephen Twigg said charities were "more concerned to protect their own reputation" rather than victims.

The Times newspaper reported in February that staff at Oxfam had paid survivors of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti for sex.

The aid group welcomed the report but said it has "further to go".

4. Germany's farmers urge government to act as heatwave threatens billions in losses

German officials will meet later today to discuss financial aid for farmers as record temperatures and prolonged droughts threaten to cause billions in damages to crops and livestock.

Farmers have called on the government to declare a state of emergency as Northern and Eastern regions struggle to cope with the dry spell.

Some of the worst affected areas haven’t seen rainfall since April, and with today predicted to be the hottest day on record so far, conditions aren’t looking to improve just yet.

Euronews correspondent Jessica Saltz spent the day on a farm in the Trebbin district of Germany. See the full story here.

5. Spanish cities set for more anti-Uber protests

Spanish taxi drivers blocked major city streets on Monday in a protest to pressure the government to curb licences to online ride-hailing services such as Uber.


The strike is set to continue after talks with government officials failed yesterday. Spanish newspaper El País reported that taxi representatives were not in favour of the government’s offer to transfer powers over licensing to regional governments. They said this would simply extend the problem to 17 regions, rather than fix it.

6. Pussy Riot protesters who ran onto pitch during World Cup detained again

Members of the Russian activist group Pussy Riot, jailed after running on to the pitch during the World Cup final, say they have been detained again shortly after they left prison.

Pyotr Verzilov, Nika Nikulshina, Olga Kurachyova and Olga Pakhtusova were jailed for 15 days earlier this month. They have also been banned from attending sports events for three years.

The group said they were protesting against human rights abuses in Russia, but it is unclear why they have been detained again.


As-it-happened updates for Tuesday, July 31

This is how we covered key world developments this morning:

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