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Iran rejects Trump's demand for changing nuclear deal

14 January 2018

While approving the waiver on US sanctions related to the nuclear deal, Washington announced other sanctions against 14 Iranian entities and people, including judiciary head Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani, a close ally of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

He said he was waiving the sanctions for the last time in order to give Congress and European allies 120 days to improve the agreement or face USA abandonment of the pact.

"However, if the "adults in the room" prevailed this time and kept Trump from exiting the deal, there remains hope they will prevail in the end", he added.

Trump might not get much help on the deal from Congress either.

"Despite my strong inclination, I have not yet withdrawn the United States from the Iran nuclear deal", Trump said in a statement, saying the options were to fix "the deal's disastrous flaws or the United States will withdraw".

This follows previous practice, in which a reluctant president has kept the U.S.in the deal but sought other ways to get tough on Iran.

He said the new deal should curb Iran's missile programme and include permanent restrictions on Iran's nuclear plants, removing expiration dates due to kick in after a decade. "This is the last chance".

The U.S. decision in imposing new sanctions on the Iranian individuals and entities proves the U.S. government's animosity towards the great Iranian nation.

Despite his hatred of the Iran nuclear deal, President has left the accord intact for now - but has given European allies 120 days to agree to a new deal or the USA will pull out.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called Trump's decision an attempt to "undermine" the deal. The European Union has also imposed penalties against Moscow, prompting it to retaliate with banning food imports from countries that sanction Russian Federation. "Rather than repeating exhausted rhetoric, United States must bring itself into full compliance - just like Iran". The Treasury Department placed sanctions on the head of the Iranian judiciary and a notorious prison.

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The US Treasury said Larijani, the brother of Iran's parliamentary speaker and former nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani, is to blame for the torture and degrading treatment of prisoners.

"In the absence of such an agreement, the United States will not again waive sanctions in order to stay in the Iran nuclear deal".

Kaveh Afrasiabi: I really don't think so. "Busy four months ahead". Under the current deal they are set to expire in 2025.

"The JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] can not be amended and we will oppose any attempts to hamper it", Ryabkov said. The 2015 agreement between the United States and Iran also was signed by China, France, Russia, Britain, Germany and the European Union, and these countries would have been unlikely to join the United States in reimposing sanctions.

The EU said in a statement it had taken note of Trump's decision and would assess its implications.

According to the White House, any new Iran deal would have to cover Iran's ballistic missiles and limit its nuclear breakout period indefinitely.

The accord signed between six global powers and Iran saw Iran agree to reduce uranium enrichment activity drastically, dispose of its enriched uranium stocks and modify a heavy water facility so it could not produce material suitable for a nuclear bomb. He accused Iran of "not living up to the spirit" of the agreement even though the International Atomic Energy Agency says Tehran is complying.

Trump on Friday avoided upending the nuclear deal with Iran that he has repeatedly disparaged, agreeing to waive key sanctions the USA lifted as part of the deal. So, there is really no rationale or justification for Trump to go against the deal and scrap it and really land a big stamp on the US' credibility on the global scene.

Britain, France and Germany called on Trump on Thursday to uphold the pact.

And Russia spoke out strongly in favor of the accord, calling it "the result of a consensus among many parties". He said remaining in the pact will give Congress more time to come up with bipartisan legislation regarding Iran.

Iran rejects Trump's demand for changing nuclear deal