Trump issues ultimatum to 'fix' Iran nuclear deal

Lester Mason
January 14, 2018

China on Saturday pledged to continue playing a constructive role in maintaining and implementing the Iran nuclear deal, after U.S. President Donald Trump set an ultimatum to fix "disastrous flaws" in a deal.

While approving the waiver on US sanctions related to the nuclear deal, Washington announced other sanctions against 14 Iranian entities and people, including judiciary head Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani, a close ally of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Trump's expected announcement comes a day after Britain, France and Germany called on Washington to uphold the nuclear deal.

Trump made the threat Friday as he extended waivers of key economic sanctions on Iran, keeping the accord alive at least for now.

He further claimed, "This is a last chance". "In the absence of such an agreement, the U.S. will not again waive sanctions in order to stay in the Iran nuclear deal".

He further stressed that the deal is "not renegotiable" and urged Trump to, instead of repeating exhausted rhetoric, bring the United States into full compliance of the deal, just like Iran.

Two senior Trump administration officials told Reuters on Wednesday that the president, a Republican, had privately expressed reluctance to heed the advice of top advisers recommending he not reimpose the suspended sanctions.


But Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the 2015 deal could not be renegotiated. These penalties largely cut Iran out of the worldwide financial system, until they were suspended by Obama under the nuclear deal.

A new round of U.S. sanctions expected against Moscow is an attempt to influence Russia's domestic affairs ahead of a presidential election, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov was quoted as saying on Saturday (Jan 13).

While Trump approved the sanctions waiver, the Treasury Department announced new, targeted sanctions against 14 entities and people, including the head of Iran's judiciary, Sadeq Amoli Larijani, a close ally of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The British and German foreign ministries said they had taken note of the decision and would confer with France before deciding on a course of action.

America's allies see the accord as the best way to thwart Iran's nuclear ambitions and a victory for multilateral diplomacy.

While there may be some relief that Trump has yet to torpedo the hard-won accord, there were clear signs of frustration from European capitals in the runup to the decision.

United Nations inspectors have certified Iran's compliance with the deal nine times, most recently in November.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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