Geopolitics

Iran vows not to let Trump destroy nuclear deal

Kristin Fisher reports from Washington

 

Iran vows not to let President-elect Donald Trump to rip up its nuclear agreement that was signed with world powers, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Tuesday.

"(Trump) wants to do many things, but none of his actions would affect us ... Do you think the United States can rip up the JCPOA (the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear deal)? Do you think we and our nation will let him do that?” Rouhani said in a speech at the University of Tehran.

Rouhani added, "Some man is elected in the U.S. whatever plans he has, it will be revealed later. Yes, he may desire many things. He may desire to weaken the nuclear deal. He may desire to rip up the deal. Do you suppose we will allow this?"

The Iranian leader’s remarks were the latest attempt by the country to calm concerns over the future of the deal in the wake of Trump’s election.

Trump has vowed to renegotiate the deal, possibly imperiling an agreement that has put off the immediate threat of Tehran developing atomic weapons.

On the campaign trail, Trump called the deal “catastrophic” and vowed to renegotiate it. However, Trump’s video in which he laid out his first 100 days in office mentioned nothing about the deal.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in Beijing on Monday that each of the seven world powers involved in the agreement “have the obligation to fully implement it.”

The July 2015 deal came after two years of negotiations between Iran, the United States, China, Britain, France, Germany and Russia. The agreement imposed strict limits on Iran's nuclear activity in exchange for the end of wide-ranging oil, trade and financial sanctions.

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Meanwhile, Iran is warning President Obama not to sign an extension of sanctions, saying the bill is a violation of the landmark agreement.

The Senate on Thursday noted to extend the Iran Sanctions Act by 10 years. Rouhani told Iranian Parliament Sunday that Obama is “obliged” to let the sanctions expire.

Rouhani promised a "prompt response" from Iran if the U.S. sanctions are extended.

"We are committed to an acceptable implementation of the deal but in response to non-commitment, violation or hesitation in its implementation, we will act promptly," he said.

Iranian nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi also warned the U.S. of a “firm and strong reaction” if it persists in actions he claims are endangering the nuclear deal.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.