Date
17 October 2017
Washington "will be in a better position" if it remains committed to the Iran nuclear deal, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says. Photo: Reuters
Washington "will be in a better position" if it remains committed to the Iran nuclear deal, Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says. Photo: Reuters

Iran may drop nuclear deal if US withdraws, minister says

Iran may abandon the nuclear deal it reached with six major powers if the United States decides to withdraw from it, Iranian foreign minister said in New York this week.

“If Washington decides to pull out of the deal, Iran has the option of withdrawal and other options,” Al Jazeera quoted Mohammad Javad Zarif as saying.

“Washington will be in a better position if it remains committed to the deal,” Zarif said, according to a Twitter feed from the TV network, Reuters reports.

US President Donald Trump has called the 2015 deal an “embarrassment”. The deal is supported by the other major powers that negotiated it with Iran and its collapse could trigger a regional arms race and worsen tensions in the Middle East.

Iranian authorities had repeatedly said Tehran would not be the first to violate the agreement, under which Tehran agreed to restrict its nuclear program in return for lifting most international sanctions that had crippled its economy.

The prospect that Washington could renege on the deal has worried some of the US allies that helped negotiate it.

French President Emmanuel Macron said last week that there was no alternative to the nuclear accord, Reuters noted.

If Trump, who has called the accord “the worst deal ever negotiated”, does not recertify it by Oct. 16, Congress has 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions suspended under the accord.

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RC

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