- President Trump is withdrawing the U.S. from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran
- Trump is reinstating sanctions on Iran, but didn’t explain how that will play out
- The deal “should have never never been made,” the president says
- Trump says the Iran deal negotiated by the Obama administration failed to protect America’s national security, but he didn’t give any examples
- Iran’s ballistic missile program feature strongly in Trump’s remarks, even though this activity wasn’t covered under the original agreement
- Trump cited Iran’s involvement in other regional conflicts, including Yemen and Syria
- While his statement started out using the harshest possible language to describe the Iranian regime, he softened his tone to talk about the Iranian people
- The president cited “evidence” from Israel to back his claims on Iran’s activity
- Trump compared his actions today to the ongoing negotiations with North Korea to bring an end to that country’s nuclear program
- Rouhani, commenting on Trump’s announcement, says Iran can achieve benefits of the JCPOA with five countries. He said that the country is prepared for enrichment IF NEEDED in three weeks
- “The EU is determined to act in accordance with its security interests and to protect its economic investments” in Iran, EU foreign policy chief Mogherini said. The bloc signals it won’t shy away from a showdown with Trump
- Former US President Barack Obama called Trump’s decision “so misguided.”
- UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres calls on other nations to preserve Iran deal.
Update 6: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said that he is “deeply concerned by today’s announcement that the US will be withdrawing” from the Iran deal.
Guterres said controversies relating to the agreement should be resolved within its mechanism for handling disagreements, and that “issues not directly related to the JCPOA should be addressed without prejudice to preserving the agreement.”
He also called on the deal’s remaining partners to work together to preserve the accord.
Read the full statement below:
I am deeply concerned by today’s announcement that the United States will be withdrawing from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and will begin reinstating US sanctions.
I have consistently reiterated that the JCPOA represents a major achievement in nuclear non-proliferation and diplomacy and has contributed to regional and international peace and security.
It is essential that all concerns regarding the implementation of the Plan be addressed through the mechanisms established in the JCPOA. Issues not directly related to the JCPOA should be addressed without prejudice to preserving the agreement and its accomplishments.
I call on other JCPOA participants to abide fully by their respective commitments under the JCPOA and on all other Member States to support this agreement.
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Update 5: Former President Barack Obama has issued a statement about President Trump’s decision to pull out of the 2015 JCPOA, one of his signature foreign policy accomplishments.
And as one might expect, he’s not happy.
Obama slammed the decision as “so misguided” and said that “walking away from the JCPOA turns our back on America’s closest allies, and an agreement that our country’s leading diplomats, scientists, and intelligence professionals negotiated.”
JUST IN: Former Pres. Obama calls Iran decision “so misguided.”
“Walking away from the JCPOA turns our back on America’s closest allies, and an agreement that our country’s leading diplomats, scientists, and intelligence professionals negotiated.” https://t.co/0cO9N9XNSU pic.twitter.com/PF6oBr4jvh
— ABC News (@ABC) May 8, 2018
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Update 4: Iranian President Rouhani appeared State TV blasting Trump, saying that “Iran complies with its commitments, US has never complied.” Furthermore, Rouhani added that from now on, “JCPOA is between Iran and 5 counties only.”
Rouhani confirmed that currency controls and reforms are being undertaken to be ready for the decision, and added that Tehran is ready to resume its nuclear enrichment work within 3 weeks after holding talks with the European members of the deal.
Today is a sad day for America’s global leadership. The Trump Administration’s dangerous & impulsive action is no substitute for real global leadership.
Saudi Arabia welcomed President Donald Trump’s decision on Tuesday to withdraw the United States from the international nuclear agreement with Iran and to reimpose economic sanctions on Tehran.
“Iran used economic gains from the lifting of sanctions to continue its activities to destabilize the region, particularly by developing ballistic missiles and supporting terrorist groups in the region,” according to a statement carried on Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television.
Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia, a key U.S. ally, has been at loggerheads with Shi’ite Iran for decades, and the countries have fought a long-running proxy war in the Middle East.
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Update 3: US Treasury announces that it will begin the process of implementing 90- and 180-day wind-down periods for activities involving Iran that were consistent with sanctions relief. At the end of that period, all applicable sanctions will come back into effect.
Today President Donald J. Trump announced his decision to cease the United States’ participation in the JCPOA and begin reimposing U.S. nuclear-related sanctions on the Iranian regime. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is taking immediate action to implement the President’s decision. Sanctions will be reimposed subject to certain 90 day and 180 day wind-down periods. At the conclusion of the wind-down periods, the applicable sanctions will come back into full effect. This includes actions under both our primary and secondary sanctions authorities. OFAC posted today to its website frequently asked questions (FAQs) that provide guidance on the sanctions that are to be re-imposed and the relevant wind-down periods.
Below is a statement from Secretary of the Treasury Steven T. Mnuchin in response to the President’s decision:
“President Trump has been consistent and clear that this Administration is resolved to addressing the totality of Iran’s destabilizing activities. We will continue to work with our allies to build an agreement that is truly in the best interest of our long-term national security. The United States will cut off the IRGC’s access to capital to fund Iranian malign activity, including its status as the world’s largest state sponsor of terror, its use of ballistic missiles against our allies, its support for the brutal Assad regime in Syria, its human rights violations against its own people, and its abuses of the international financial system.”
The Treasury Department’s FAQ on sanctions is very blunt:
Q: Will the United States resume efforts to reduce Iran’s crude oil sales?
However, it appears it is very unclear just what sanction-specifics are…
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Update 2: After initially spiking, oil is now rapidly fading the entire move.
Meanwhile, at least Israel is delighted by the development:
- NETANYAHU SAYS DEAL GAVE IRAN BILLIONS TO FUND TERROR
- NETANYAHU CALLS ON INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO STOP THE BAD DEAL
Statement from House Speaker Paul Ryan:
“From the beginning, the Obama-era Iran Deal was deeply flawed. Iran’s hostile actions since its signing have only reaffirmed that it remains dedicated to sowing instability in the region. The president’s announcement today is a strong statement that we can and must do better. I have always believed the best course of action is to fix the deficiencies in the agreement. It is unfortunate that we could not reach an understanding with our European partners on a way to do that, but I am grateful to them for working with the United States toward that goal. The president is right to insist that we hold Iran accountable both today and for the long-term. There will now be an implementation period for applying sanctions on Iran. During that time, it is my hope that the United States will continue to work with our allies to achieve consensus on addressing a range of destabilizing Iranian behavior—both nuclear and non-nuclear.”
The full White House fact sheet on ending the “Unacceptable” Iran deal can be found here, some excerpts below:
The Iran Deal was one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.
President Donald J. Trump
PROTECTING AMERICA FROM A BAD DEAL: President Donald J. Trump is terminating the United States’ participation in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran and re-imposing sanctions lifted under the deal.
- President Trump is terminating United States participation in the JCPOA, as it failed to protect America’s national security interests.
- The JCPOA enriched the Iranian regime and enabled its malign behavior, while at best delaying its ability to pursue nuclear weapons and allowing it to preserve nuclear research and development.
- The President has directed his Administration to immediately begin the process of re-imposing sanctions related to the JCPOA.
- The re-imposed sanctions will target critical sectors of Iran’s economy, such as its energy, petrochemical, and financial sectors.
- Those doing business in Iran will be provided a period of time to allow them to wind down operations in or business involving Iran.
- Those who fail to wind down such activities with Iran by the end of the period will risk severe consequences.
- United States withdrawal from the JCPOA will pressure the Iranian regime to alter its course of malign activities and ensure that Iranian bad acts are no longer rewarded. As a result, both Iran and its regional proxies will be put on notice. As importantly, this step will help ensure global funds stop flowing towards illicit terrorist and nuclear activities.
IRAN’S BAD FAITH AND BAD ACTIONS: Iran negotiated the JCPOA in bad faith, and the deal gave the Iranian regime too much in exchange for too little.
- Intelligence recently released by Israel provides compelling details about Iran’s past secret efforts to develop nuclear weapons, which it lied about for years.
- The intelligence further demonstrates that the Iranian regime did not come clean about its nuclear weapons activity, and that it entered the JCPOA in bad faith.
- The JCPOA failed to deal with the threat of Iran’s missile program and did not include a strong enough mechanism for inspections and verification.
- The JCPOA foolishly gave the Iranian regime a windfall of cash and access to the international financial system for trade and investment.
- Instead of using the money from the JCPOA to support the Iranian people at home, the regime has instead funded a military buildup and continues to fund its terrorist proxies, such as Hizballah and Hamas.
- Iran violated the laws and regulations of European countries to counterfeit the currency of its neighbor, Yemen, to support the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force’s destabilizing activities.