US Set to Extend Iran Sanctions Relief Under Nuclear Deal

Cheryl Sanders
September 14, 2017

Perhaps. But Iran negotiated the current nuclear deal only after the USA imposed and enforced sanctions that cut its banking system off from the worldwide economy and cut off its ability to export oil.

Weeks after U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley raised the issue during meetings with International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) officials in Vienna, IAEA director-general Yukiya Amano said Monday that in carrying out its duties under what's known as the Additional Protocol, "we do not distinguish [between] civilian locations - sites - and military".

Trump has reiterated to aides just in the past few days that he wants to get tougher on Iran, but it is not clear how, said a USA official, speaking not for attribution.

In a speech last week, USA ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley laid out how and why the administration might decertify the agreement, citing Iran's other malign activities, such as support for terrorism.

As dozens of retired Generals and Admirals wrote in a letter to Trump in July, the administration must "recognize the national security benefits of the nuclear agreement and appropriately weigh the risks to our troops of escalating tensions with Iran".

The abrogation of the nuclear deal would lend a tremendous blow to the global credibility of major powers that signed the deal with Iran.

Over 80 prominent global disarmament experts have urged US President Donald Trump to reconsider his possible plans to unravel Iran's 2015 nuclear agreement with six world powers, including the US. "That Iranian nuclear agreement has held and is one of the few bright spots in that region", Blumenauer said. That is, when the Obama administration signed the deal, Congress required him to say every three months whether he believed Iran was in compliance. Such certification is needed by USA law every 90 days in order for the Congress to continue to withhold nuclear-related sanctions against Iran.

In addition, "sanctions never stopped Iran's nuclear program", argued Sherman, saying that the number of Iranian centrifuges grew to 19,000 under the old sanctions regime despite its crippling effect on the Iranian economy.

Last month, shortly after Trump grudgingly certified the Islamic Republic as abiding by the deal, reports emerged that he was directing his aides to develop a case for why the regime violated the agreement come the next October deadline.

A European official, who asked not to be identified because the talks are private, described a visit by Americans as part of a listening tour on Iran policy and stressed there was no agreement.

Earlier this year, the IAEA reported that its verification of Iran's nuclear commitments includes those set out in various sections of the agreement - including Section T - but Albright and Heinonen contend truly effective verification "requires the establishment of a routine inspection approach".

In another, the White House elaborated.

They said that abandoning the deal "without clear evidence of an unresolved material breach by Iran. runs the risk that Tehran would resume some of its nuclear activities". "But I think the question becomes, even if that's their near-term strategy, whether it is politically sustainable over the long-term?"

There's also another possibility: that the Trump administration will continue to waive sanctions against Iran, and then decertify. If the president does not certify compliance, Congress would have 60 days to decide whether to re-impose sanctions that were lifted under the agreement.

"What the USA administration is now trying to do is putting limits on the Iranian sphere of influence", Pastori said.

"So, we won't get anxious if they use pressure".

Other reports by iNewsToday