Published: Thu, April 20, 2017
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Donald Trump administration orders review of Iran nuclear deal sanctions

In a letter to US House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan, the top Republican in Congress, on Tuesday US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Iran remained compliant with the 2015 deal, but said there were concerns about its role as a state sponsor of terrorism.

An inter-agency review has been ordered by the Trump administration to check whether the suspension of sanctions on Iran under a landmark nuclear deal in 2015 was in the US' national security interests, the secretary of state has said. He said those attempting to undermine or destroy the JCPA will not succeed, adding that those countries involved in the agreement should follow through - perhaps a statement directed at the United States and Trump, who said the deal is one of the worst in history.

"Recommendations about where deal stands to be presented to Trump after 90 day review", Spicer stated.

Iran and six world powers - Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the USA - reached an agreement on the country's nuclear issue in July 2015 that put Iran on the path of sanctions relief but with more strict limits on nuclear programme.

If the Trump administration tries to alter the deal or to re-impose sanctions, it could prompt Iran to violate a range of obligations, like the disabling of nuclear facilities and the sharp limits on reprocessing uranium.

But his predecessor Barack Obama insisted the deal was the best way to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons.

The two issues are not linked under the deal - and if the USA were to reinstate sanctions over Iran's alleged ties to terrorism, the United States would be in violation of the deal.

Under the deal, Iran must reduce its number of centrifuges by two-thirds, cap uranium enrichment below the level needed for weapons-grade material, and submit to worldwide inspections to confirm compliance.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei warned in November that Tehran would retaliate if the United States breached the nuclear agreement. Since the sanctions have been lifted, oil exports from Iran to India have surged.

At the time, officials stressed that a violation of the UN Security Council resolution on Iranian ballistic missile activity would not impact the Iran nuclear deal.

It's unclear exactly how long the Trump administration's review will take.

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