President Donald Trump’s administration declared that Iran was complying with its nuclear agreement with world powers, but warned that Tehran was in default of the spirit of the accord and that the US would look for ways to strengthen it.
It was the second time Trump certified Iranian compliance with the agreement since he took office in January, despite criticizing it during the 2016 campaign as “the worst deal ever.”
Trump administration officials, briefing reporters on the decision, said new economic sanctions against Iran were being prepared over its ballistic missile program and for contributing to regional tensions.
Under U.S. law, the State Department must notify Congress every 90 days of Iran’s compliance with the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Trump had faced a congressionally mandated deadline of Monday to decide.
A senior administration official said Iran was judged in compliance of the 2015 nuclear deal but that Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson believed Iran “remains one of the most dangerous threats to U.S. interests and to regional stability.”