With waiver, US lets Iran keep getting benefits of nuke deal
- Author: Leroy Wright May 18, 2017,
May 18, 2017, 20:29
Nevertheless, his statement added, the Treasury Department will apply new targeted sanctions on individuals and firms helping Iran's banned ballistic missile program.
The statement notes the U.S. extension of sanctions relief on Iran under the nuclear deal, followed by new sanctions on the Islamic Republic for its missile program announced by the Treasury Department on Wednesday, as a way to diminish the positive effects of the implementation of its commitments under the JCPOA.
The announcement also came two days before the Iranian Presidential elections, in which incumbent President Hassan Rouhani, who negotiated the nuclear deal for Iran with the P5+1 countries, is seeking re-election.
Trump threatened to tear up the nuclear deal during his campaign and has launched a review of its terms, but until then he is required to decide on renewing sanctions relief at regular intervals.
Lawrence Ward, a partner at worldwide law firm Dorsey & Whitney, said that the announcement by the State Department to continue the USA participation in the Iran nuclear deal is quite significant.
While the USA says it will continue waiving these sanctions, it is ratcheting up other sanctions related to human rights abuses and the country's ballistic missile program. The State Department communicated to the Congress that the USA continues to waive sanctions as required to continue implementing the U.S. sanctions-lifting commitments in the JCPOA.
In fact, it would violate a UN Security Council resolution and give Iran justification for resuming their nuclear weapons programme.
But the Trump administration, dominated by fiercely anti-Iran sentiment, balanced the sanctions waivers with new measures against Iranian defence officials and a Chinese business tied to Tehran's ballistic missile programme. "And they were also at the table and they still support the deal".
The Trump administration is now in the process of reviewing US policy toward Iran.
The US says the programme is a breach of global law because the missiles could carry nuclear warheads in the future.
But Tehran politicians such as Rouhani, who have staked political capital on their engagement with the West delivering economic gains, will be relieved the nuclear accord survives.
And in January, just before his inauguration, Trump again dubbed it "one of the worst deals ever made".
While both the US State Department and the United Nations nuclear watchdog agency report that Iran is compliant with the nuclear deal, evidence provided last month by the Iranian Resistance shows that the Regime has simply moved their base of operations to a secret site, resumed working on advanced centrifuges, and refused access to independent inspectors.
But he said Trump had ordered a review of the agreement to determine if it remains in the U.S. interest.