Trump keeps Iran deal, but threatens more sanctions

United Nations Secretary General António Guterres

A third senior administration official said there would be a period of "working with allies to address JCPOA's flaws, of which there are many", including looking at how restrictions on Iran's nuclear development activities sunset over time and working with allies "to build a case of serious flaws in the agreement while also looking for ways to more strictly enforce the deal".

They also expect to see more sanctions over the Regime's ballistic missile program and regional destabilisation.

"This Administration will continue to aggressively target Iran's malign activity, including their ongoing state support of terrorism, ballistic missile program, and human rights abuses", Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

While Trump has officially recognized Iran's compliance with the agreement, one administration official explained to reporters the basis for Trump's reservations.

The U.S. said Iranian military advances in the Mideast and alliances with insurgent groups in the region "are serving to undercut whatever "positive contributions" to regional and worldwide peace and security were meant to emerge" from the 2015 nuclear pact.

This is likely the U.S. policy going forward, at least for now, efforts to sabotage the deal with violations while grudgingly conceding that Iran isn't actually violating the deal.

But Steve Bannon, Trump's strategic advisor who keeps a list of Trump's campaign pledges on a white board in his White House office, said Trump should follow through with his promise to tear up the deal.

The White House last certified Iran's compliance with the terms of the deal in April. Saudi Arabia and Iran compete for influence in the Middle East, also supporting rival groups in Syria's civil war.

"Iran should immediately release all of these US citizens on humanitarian grounds", the State Department said.

Mr. Trump has criticized the nuclear accord as a "horrible" deal and pledged during the campaign a year ago to withdraw the USA from the pact.

The five nuclear powers - China, Russia, France, Britain, the United States - plus Germany, are planning to meet this Friday to take stock of the deal.

The president's team also reportedly emphasized the need to coordinate any us action across the range of actors involved in the Iran deal, which is also signed by the United Kingdom, Russia, France, China, and Germany.

The State Department said the six-month-old administration of President Donald Trump is continuing to conduct a full review of its Iranian policy.

But White House and other administration officials tell me the president nonetheless is serious about cracking down on Iran for its regional aggression, and is leaning closer to those of his advisers who are pushing him to pull out of the agreement that defines Obama's foreign policy legacy.

The United Nations has repeatedly said Iran is complying.

The point, however, is that the Iran deal negotiated by the Obama administration is in trouble.

Tuesday's sanctions came after the US Senate in June overwhelmingly passed legislation to strengthen sanctions against Iran for its ballistic missile testing and other non-nuclear provocations.

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