Trump expected to declare Iran noncompliant with nuclear deal
The Washington Post has reported that White House sources believe US President Donald Trump will not provide certification that Iran is following the 2015 nuclear deal, opening the door for a US exit from the deal and more intense sanctions against the Islamic Republic, APA reports quoting Sputnik.
The 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) meant to halt Iran's development of nuclear weapons (although Tehran has consistently denied that their nuclear program was ever meant to yield weapons) in exchange for sanctions relief requires the US president to "certify" that Iran is abiding by the agreement every 90 days.
Trump has reluctantly declared Iran compliant twice before, but frequently threatened to do otherwise. The next deadline is on October 15. The anonymous White House sources say that Trump is most likely going to declare Iran noncompliant, citing US national interest.
However, Trump's refusal to certify Iranian compliance does not necessarily mean the deal is scrapped. Should Trump de-certify Iran, the issue would then bounce to Congress and they have 60 days to decide how many, if any, sanctions that were paused by the JCPOA should resume. Only if they decide to resume sanctions would the US would have to exit the agreement.
Trump's speech is tentatively scheduled for October 12, and will take a hardline stance against the Islamic Republic. However, Trump has repeatedly pushed for the JCPOA, "the worst and most one-sided transaction Washington has ever entered into" as he described it during his United Nations General Assembly speech, to be renegotiated instead of discarded entirely. As such, Trump is expected not to recommend for Congress to reimpose sanctions and exit the agreement just yet, report White House sources.
But a renegotiation seems unlikely. It takes two to tango, and Iranian leaders dismissed the possibility of an exit, with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani telling the press on September 21 that it would be a "waste of time" to do so.
"We held negotiations for many years on [the JCPOA]… but today the Americans talk of leaving the deal. So why should negotiations on other issues be held [with the US]?" Rouhani asked reporters after his speech at the UN General Assembly.
It isn't just Iran and the US — five other countries signed the JCPOA, too: China, France, Germany, Russia and the United Kingdom. The leaders of all five have implored the Americans to remain within the agreement, with French President Emmanuel Macron and UK Prime Minister Theresa May both attempting to convince Trump in person to declare Iran compliant — reportedly, both in vain.
German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel told US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Sunday that leaving the Iran deal may harm the prospect of nuclear disarmament in an entirely different part of the world. "If the US cancelled its nuclear deal with Iran, that would undermine the credibility of its offer to North Korea," Gabriel said, according to Press TV.
"I want to stress that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) is an important outcome of multilateralism," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang during a September press conference. "It is a model of resolving international hot-spot issue through political and diplomatic means."
Russian President Vladimir Putin has also thrown his support behind the JCPOA, saying at a Wednesday speech at the Russian Energy Week-2017 international forum that "all reports of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) say that Iran fully meets all its commitments. We are guided by these considerations and will back the deal, which was brokered under the previous US administration, although we had many differences on other issues."
Even members of Trump's own cabinet have publicly defended the JCPOA. "At this point in time, absent indications to the contrary, it is something the president should consider staying in," said US Defense Secretary James Mattis before Congress on Tuesday, adding that the pact was beneficial to national security.
Related news releases
- 14.12.2017Plane with 25 people aboard crashes in Canada
- 14.12.2017Trump's eldest son testifies to Senate committee in Russia probe
- 14.12.2017Despite Tillerson overture, White House says not right time for North Korea talks
- 14.12.2017Canada says defense firms can now sell small arms to Ukraine
- 14.12.2017US ‘committed to its strategic partnership with Turkey’
- 14.12.2017Brazil's Temer back in hospital for prostate tests
- 13.12.2017FETO fugitive admits receiving money from FBI
- 13.12.2017400,000 children in DR Congo could die from hunger, says Unicef
- 13.12.2017The US Federal Reserve will raise the rate
- 13.12.2017UN warns of new Syria refugee flow into Europe
- 13.12.2017U.S. Secretary of State: U.S. ready to talk but North Korea must be ready to change course
- 13.12.2017Pentagon looking to triple size of Afghan air force by 2025
- 13.12.2017Venezuela to start criminal probe into ex-oil czar Ramirez
- 12.12.2017New York bombing suspect Akayed Ullah warned Trump on Facebook
- 12.12.2017Trump to send astronauts back to the moon - and eventually Mars
- 11.12.2017Mayor: Explosion at Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan was attempted terror attack
- 11.12.2017New York 'bomb' prematurely exploded at Manhattan subway platform - UPDATED
- 09.12.2017Trump senior aide Dina Powell to resign early next year: White House
- 08.12.2017Trump: I fulfilled my campaign promise
- 08.12.2017US Congress passes spending bill to avoid government shutdown
- 08.12.2017Ex-South Carolina cop sentenced to 20 years in US
- 08.12.2017Judge orders arrest of former Argentine president
- 08.12.201741 students suffer minor injuries after 3 school buses crash in Kentucky
- 07.12.20173 dead, 15 injured in New Mexico high school shooting
- 07.12.2017B-1B bomber joins U.S.-South Korea drills as tensions escalate
- 07.12.2017Trump urges Saudi Arabia to lift Yemen blockade
- 07.12.2017Wildfires rage across California as thousands flee to safety
- 06.12.2017Trump recognizes Jerusalem as Israel's capital
- 06.12.2017Trump to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital today
- 06.12.2017Paraguay Congress legalizes planting of medical marijuana
- 05.12.20171 dead, thousands threatened by California wildfire
- 05.12.2017US: Supreme Court allows full enforcement of travel ban
- 03.12.2017Arming PKK/YPG to stop per Trump, Erdogan talk: Mattis
- 03.12.2017Trump says Flynn's actions during presidential transition were lawful
- 03.12.2017Two dead as Honduran army enforces curfew while vote count stalls
- 03.12.2017US Senate passes largest tax overhaul in 31 years
- 02.12.2017U.N. council to meet on North Korea rights abuses, nuclear program in December
- 02.12.2017Trump, on Twitter, says Tillerson will remain as top U.S. diplomat
- 02.12.2017One dead, scores hurt in growing protests over delayed Honduran vote count
- 01.12.2017Nigeria: 4 policemen killed in raid on Fulani area
- 06.10.2017Two NASA astronauts finish 7-hour spacewalk
- 06.10.2017Iran has not lived up to 'spirit' of nuclear deal: Trump
- 06.10.2017UN approves resolution to verify Colombia cease-fire
- 05.10.2017Brazilian Olympics chief arrested in bribery probe
- 05.10.2017Las Vegas gunman's girlfriend says she had 'no idea he was planning violence'
- 05.10.2017Canada relaxes rules on citizenship requirements