(Bloomberg) -- Want to receive this post in your inbox every day? Sign up for the Balance of Power newsletter, and follow Bloomberg Politics on Twitter and Facebook for more.
Atomic inspectors are meeting today in Vienna at the behest of the U.S., which seeks to keep squeezing Iran over a nuclear deal that Donald Trump abandoned a year ago. The scientists are likely to opt for the long grass.
Iran is clearly violating some of the terms of the pact that is now hanging by a thread with the remaining parties to it, as military tensions rise in the Gulf and markets worry about the security of oil supply.
But the International Atomic Energy Agency has said that – until Trump walked away and reimposed economic sanctions - Tehran was conforming to the boundaries of the deal. And there’s probably some sympathy for Iran’s predicament.
European nations have called for the U.S. to exercise caution in Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Tehran. They favor a diplomatic track, as do Russia and China. French President Emmanuel Macron’s top diplomatic adviser is in Tehran today to meet Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.
U.S. diplomats will tell the IAEA that Iran expanding enrichment is unacceptable. But the 35-member board of governors isn't expected to take tangible action. They want their inspectors to remain on the ground keeping tabs on whether, or how quickly, Iran speeds up its nuclear activities.
Challenges ahead | China and the U.S. resumed high-level trade talks with a phone call that marked the first confirmed contact since Trump and Xi Jinping ended their stalemate last month. But negotiators still face a raft of flashpoint issues, including U.S. concerns about unrest in Hong Kong and the Trump administration’s continued restrictions on Huawei.
Dollar doubts | Trump is concerned that the strengthening U.S. dollar is a threat to his economic agenda and has asked aides to cast about for ways to weaken the greenback, Saleha Mohsin and Jennifer Jacobs exclusively report. The president inquired about the currency in job interviews last week with two Federal Reserve nominees and has lamented that the dollar's strength could blunt a boom he expects to carry him to a second term.
Looming crunch | U.K. lawmakers have set up yet another potential crisis, passing a measure aimed at preventing the next prime minister from forcing through a no-deal Brexit. Front-runner Boris Johnson has refused to rule out suspending Parliament if it’s the only way to leave the European Union by Oct. 31, and – with the opposition Labour Party committed to opposing any exit plan put forward by the government – all sides have hardened their positions.
Wind burn | Vladimir Putin is worried about worms. Specifically, the impact of renewable energy from wind turbines that the Russian president said “shake so much that worms get out from the soil!” The leader of the world’s top oil and gas exporter also raised fears about bird deaths from wind power generation. Putin set out his environmental concerns at an industrialization summit in Yekaterinburg, located in Russia’s most polluted region.
Reform stasis | South African business leaders are running out of patience with President Cyril Ramaphosa. They say the cabinet Ramaphosa named after his May election win hasn’t brought in enough fresh ideas, while his state-of-the-nation address a month later was full of feel-good spending pledges and short on funding plans. As Antony Sguazzin and Roxanne Henderson report, the president’s failure to make tough decisions threatens the country’s last-remaining investment-grade credit rating.
What to Watch
Turkey may take delivery of Russia’s S-400 missile defense system this week, a move that could prompt U.S. sanctions on its NATO counterpart. Washington argues Moscow could collect intelligence that would compromise the F-35 stealth fighter, which Turkish companies are helping to build. Top Democratic presidential candidates have bolstered the share of staffers in their Senate offices who are women and minorities, according to a report obtained by Bloomberg. Click here for up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the 2020 race. The head of the U.K.’s diplomatic service, Simon McDonald, appears before a parliamentary committee today to discuss the leaked memos that triggered an ugly spat with Trump. The government has stood by its under-pressure envoy in Washington, though Johnson refused to commit to keeping him should he become premier.
And finally... India’s doctors are praying for rain. Archana Chaudhary reports that surgeons are buying their own water and preparing to turn patients away as piped supplies dry up across the country. Even the expensive water tankers they’re relying on may soon run out as delays in this year’s monsoon leave nearly half of India facing drought-like conditions.
--With assistance from Karen Leigh, Paul Richardson, Stuart Biggs, Ruth Pollard and Anthony Halpin.
To contact the authors of this story: Rosalind Mathieson in London at firstname.lastname@example.orgLin Noueihed in Cairo at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kathleen Hunter at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com
©2019 Bloomberg L.P.