Talks on Iran nuclear deal amid questions of U.S. commitment

"So we were not really thinking the same", Trump said before departing for California. It could also cause countries that weren't party to the deal to increase their sanctions on Iran. I think it's awful, I guess he felt it was okay; I wanted to either break it or do something, and he felt a little bit differently.

Trump said that he and CIA Director Mike Pompeo, who he said he is naming to replace Tillerson, think more alike.

"We need to make sure that we don't throw out the baby with the bath water, so we keep the nuclear agreement and we act on the rest in parallel", said the diplomat.
Pompeo, by contrast, has been a vocal critic of the accord.

Trump has vowed to walk away from the 2015 agreement in mid-May unless European countries join the U.S.in addressing what the president says are its key flaws.

"Frightening and threatening the world's business and economic communities not to work with Iran constitute a clear violation of different articles of the JCPOA", said Araqchi in reference to Washington's policy, under Trump, toward the Iran deal.

The changes the administration is seeking include the indefinite extension of limits on Iran's uranium enrichment and other nuclear activities and an intensified inspections regime.

It remains to be seen whether Pompeo will continue Tillerson's efforts to try to save the deal by working out side deals with European allies Britain, Germany, and France.

President Donald Trump's decision to fire his top diplomat has put the Iran nuclear agreement at risk and has thrown into confusion an upcoming meeting of the accord's signatories. It's the last scheduled meeting of the group before Trump's 12 May decision on whether the United States sticks to the accord.

But analysts said European banks and other firms are already reluctant to do business in Iran due to the threat of a possible "snap-back" of USA sanctions and don't want to lose their access to the vast American market. Instead, Tillerson proposed trying to address the president's concerns by negotiating a supplemental agreement or other arrangement with the Europeans, while retaining the benefits of the current deal.

The agreement allows Iran to pursue a nuclear energy program - for strictly civilian use - in return for the lifting of longstanding economic sanctions.

Araqchi said, however, that the United States, as a party to the JCPOA, has adopted a subversive approach toward the JCPOA over the past 14 months.

This is made worse by the fact that Iran now controls four capitals in the Middle East - Damascus, Beirut, Baghdad and Sana'a - and is well on its way to creating a Shiite Crescent across the Middle East.

Trump has repeatedly designated the JCPOA as a deal that harms U.S. interests and should be either cancelled or repaired.


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