Worry, fear in Iran ahead of Trump's decision on atomic deal

Hannah Rogers
May 7, 2018

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has urged President Trump not to give up on the Iran nuclear deal, saying "at this delicate juncture it would be a mistake to walk away".

"If the IAEA is expelled, we will no longer have eyes and ears on what's happening and may well face Iran starting back on the road to nuclear weapons", said Wendy Sherman, a former USA diplomat who helped lead the USA negotiating team on the Iran deal.

Whatever Trump decides, France, Britain and Germany will stick to the deal because it is the best way to stop Iran developing a nuclear bomb, French Foreign Minister Yean-Yves Le Drian said on Monday after meeting his German counterpart.

Trump has described the 2015 agreement, which lifted sanctions on Iran in return for limits on its nuclear program, as "terrible".

"We have plans to resist any decision by Trump on the nuclear accord", Mr Rouhani said in a speech carried live by state television.

Although the USA and its European allies had not yet agreed on a separate deal for Mr. Trump to sign off on, Darroch thinks a decision could be reached as early as the end of the week.

Under the global deal, Iran has limited its nuclear activities in return for eased economic sanctions.

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"On so numerous world's foreign policy challenges the United Kingdom and USA are in lockstep", Boris Johnson said in a statement, citing the poisoning in Britain of Russian double-agent Sergei Skripal, and opposition to the use of chemical weapons in Syria and to the development of nuclear weapons in North Korea.

Netanyahu is an outspoken critic of the accord, which requires Iran to limit its nuclear enrichment in exchange for the lifting of worldwide sanctions.

Regardless of where they are headquartered, virtually all multinational corporations do business or banking in the U.S., meaning any return to pre-deal sanctions could torpedo deals made after the 2015 agreement came into force.

He will also hold talks with senior administration officials including USA vice president Mike Pence and national security adviser John Bolton.

Mr Rouhani said: "If we can get what we want from a deal without America, then Iran will continue to remain committed to the deal". Darroch said the plan for now is keeping the US a part of the deal.

Johnson is the last representative of the so-called "EU three" - France, Germany and Britain, key allies in negotiating the deal in 2015 - to meet the administration before the deadline.

The nuclear deal was struck in 2015 between Iran and Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the USA, then led by Barack Obama. The U.S. and its allies maintain separate sanctions on Iran for those problems. The first item he doesn't like about the deal is the sunset clauses that put time limits on some restrictions like those placed on centrifuges and research. Rouhani continued: "You (US) should know that you can not threaten this great nation because our people withstood eight years of defense (in the war with Iraq)". And even if a so-called "add-on deal" with the Europeans is achieved, there is no guarantee it will satisfy Trump.

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