Trump Gives The Iran Deal One Last Lifeline

Trump Gives The Iran Deal One Last Lifeline

Trump Gives The Iran Deal One Last Lifeline

It has said it will abide by the agreement as long as other signatories do, but warned that it would "shred" the deal should Washington pull out.

"As a first step, we will coordinate with the E3 and the other EU Member States to jointly assess the statement and its implications." said Catherine Ray, Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

Implementation of the deal hasn't been derailed, but will face some new complicating factors, said the minister.

Although Trump approved the waiver on USA sanctions as spelled out in the deal, Washington announced other sanctions against 14 Iranian entities and individuals, including judiciary head Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani, a close ally of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Students and police face off at the University of Tehran during a demonstration in Iran’s capital Tehran on Dec. 30 2017
Students and police face off at the University of Tehran during a demonstration in Iran’s capital Tehran on Dec. 30 2017

The pact is underpinned on the USA side by a presidential waiver of nuclear-related sanctions on Iran's central bank.

Trump at that time essentially handed lawmakers the ball, saying it is up to Congress to decide whether to keep the status quo, slap the waived sanctions back on Tehran and blow up the 2015 deal - or set up what White House aides describe as "trigger points" that likely would put the nuclear pact in jeopardy.

Republican Senator Bob Corker said "significant progress" had been made on bipartisan congressional legislation to address "flaws in the agreement without violating U.S. commitments". Trump will also demand Iran allow easier and more immediate access to global inspections of its nuclear sites.

Trump also wants Iran's ballistic missile programme to be addressed.

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Ryabkov's remarks come one day after U.S. President Donald Trump extended sanctions relief on Iran for what he said would be the final time. Work already has begun on this front, the official said.

What is the nuclear deal?

While Trump did not levy nuclear sanctions on the regime, the administration is hitting Iran with several other sanctions for its ballistic missile activity and violent crackdown on anti-government protesters in recent weeks. One US official told the Washington Times that the actions "will send a very strong message that the United States is not going to tolerate their continued abuses".

A decision to withhold a waiver would have effectively ended the deal that limits Iran's nuclear program.

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Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) didn't like the idea of waiving Iran's nuclear sanctions.

The 2015 agreement was signed by Barack Obama, Mr Trump's predecessor, and saw economic sanctions waived in return for Iran not developing nuclear weapons.

Britain, France and Germany had called on Trump on Thursday to uphold the pact. The deal, negotiated by the Obama administration is centered exclusively on the Iranian's nuclear weapons program.

But it is by no means clear if Congress can come up with a solution to revisit the deal within 120 days, in which case the USA may withdraw from the landmark deal.

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One senior administration official said Trump would be open to remaining in a modified deal if it were made permanent. The EU said in a statemen t on Friday that it had taken note of Trump's decision and would assess its implications.

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