Trump administration will certify Iran still complying with nuclear deal

Violet Powell
July 19, 2017

Trump, during his election campaign, had who vowed to dismantle the agreement, but he is now seeking more time to determine whether to let it stand.

At the same time, the USA treasury department said it was targeting 16 entities and individuals for supporting what is said was "illicit Iranian actors or transnational criminal activity".

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert voiced U.S. concerns over "Iran's malign activities across the Middle East which undermine regional stability, security, and prosperity".

The five nuclear powers - China, Russia, France, Britain, the United States - plus Germany, are planning to meet this Friday to take stock of the deal.

Addressing an open session of the parliament on Tuesday after the MPs passed the motion unanimously, Larijani said, "The approval of the motion indicates the Iranian nation's determination to counteract the U.S. measures (in the region)".

An official added: "we do expect that we will be implementing new sanctions that pertain to Iran's ballistic missile program and fast boat program".

The senior official, speaking on background, said the White House believes Iran remains one of the most unsafe governments, and cited as evidence Tehran's support for terrorism, continuing hostility to Israel, cyberattacks against the United States and numerous human-rights abuses.

"Counting the Revolutionary Guards the same as terrorist groups and applying similar sanctions to the Revolutionary Guards is a big risk for America and its bases and forces deployed in the region", Major General Mohammad Baqeri, Iran's armed forces chief of staff said at a gathering of military commanders, the Tasnim newspaper reported.

The statement also criticised Iran's support for the Syrian government and groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas.

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Apart from nuclear-related sanctions on Iran, the US argues that it retains the right to impose non-nuclear related sanctions on Iran as well despite the 2015 agreement.

Three senior administration officials briefed reporters on the certification on conditions of anonymity imposed by the White House.

The measure in order to become law needs to be signed by President Donald Trump.

Trump reportedly departed for a recent global trip to Paris under the impression his national security team would have the strategy awaiting him, but was unsatisfied when presented with the plan Monday.

Under terms of the agreement, Iran gained relief from economic sanctions targeting its nuclear activity in response to allegations it was working to develop nuclear weapons.

"It took the U.S. longer to clear the purchase of Airbus airplanes than it took for the purchase of Boeing airplanes".

"Iran's regime has an egregious human rights record", Nauert said.

Behind the scenes, advisers argued that there was no alternative but to recertify the deal for now because the past sanctions regime the United States had with European allies against Iran is no longer in place and unilateral sanctions are not as effective as multi-lateral ones.

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