Iran nuclear deal 'not dead' despite United States exit

Sergio Cunningham
May 10, 2018

It eased economic sanctions on Iran in exchange for Tehran limiting its nuclear programme.

In a joint statement from Prime Minister May, Chancellor Merkel and President Macron following President Trump's statement on Iran, the leaders said: "Together, we emphasise our continuing commitment to the JCPoA".

"The EU, and also Denmark, will do everything we can to remain in the agreement, even though the USA is now pulling out of it", he said.

Iran's parliament speaker said President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of a 2015 global nuclear deal was a violation of an agreement that would isolate the United States, state television reported on Wednesday.

Macron said he regretted Trump's decision.

Appearing on Fox and Friends, which Mr Trump watches, he said: "If you do that (ditch the deal) you have to answer the question what next? Mr. Trump, I tell you, on behalf of the Iranian people: You've made a mistake".

"It's pretty obvious to me that unless something changes in the next few days, I believe the president will not waive the sanctions", one European diplomat said, adding he saw only a "very small" chance that Mr Trump would stay in the deal.

According to the U.S. Treasury Department, these will include sanctions on Iran's shipping industry, oil industry, secondary sanctions against third-country financial institutions doing business with Iran, and sanctions on Iran's energy sector.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand released a statement addressing the concerns that withdrawing from the deal removes the ability to maintain a strong coalition holding Iran accountable.

Describing this as a bad deal, Trump said that the nuclear deal is unlikely to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

But the move has isolated the USA from allies in Europe - Britain, France and Germany - that are also signatories to the deal and earnt criticism from other traditional allies, including Australia.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani issued an ultimatum to the remaining countries in the deal: live up to their commitments or Iran will resume uranium enrichment "in the next weeks".

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Mr Rouhani said Iran had been preparing for every possible scenario, including a deal without the U.S., which would still include the other signatories that remain committed to it, or no deal at all.

During a trip to Washington DC, the foreign secretary appealed to Mr Trump in a series of interviews with U.S. media outlets, warning that Iran would "go for a bomb" if he pulls out of the deal.

They added that, because of the 2015 pact forged with the United States, Russia, China and Iran, "The world is a safer place", vowing to adhere to it despite the USA pullout.

"They will blame Rouhani".

THE EU is "determined to preserve" the Iran nuclear deal despite the U.S. withdrawal, the bloc's diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini said Tuesday, pledging to "stay true" if Tehran stuck to its commitments.

Former President Barack Obama issued a strong rebuke of the Trump administration's decision to exit the Iran deal on Tuesday.

"President Trump said this sends North Korea a signal that we're not in these discussions with Kim Jong Un just to have a deal". Despite the backlash, Bolton argued Trump made the right move by fulfilling one of his key campaign promises.

"We fundamentally share America's concerns in relation to Iran's destabilising regional behaviour and the ballistic missile programme". Referring to his consultation with key American allies, Trump said it is that they can not prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb under the "decaying and rotten" structure of the current agreement.

Iran's exports of oil to Asia and Europe will nearly certainly decline later this year and into 2019 as some nations seek alternatives in order to avoid trouble with Washington and as sanctions start to bite.

Tehran warned it would enrich more uranium than ever if negotiations with other countries if the pact failed.

"Why would Iran agree with a bigger deal when the United States let it down on a smaller deal".

Since the deal was signed, the European Union has effectively lifted all sanctions on Iran, but Washington has kept some in place over Iran's missile program, which was not covered by the deal.

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