NIAC Responds to President Trump’s Renewal of Sanction Waivers for Iran

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Elham Khatami
Phone: 202-386-6325
Email: ekhatami@niacouncil.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Trita Parsi, President of the National Iranian American Council, issued the following statement regarding the President’s expected renewal of sanctions waivers pursuant to U.S. obligations under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA):

“We welcome President Trump’s decision to adhere to the obligations of the U.S. under the JCPOA and waive nuclear-related sanctions with Iran, but we remain concerned about the Trump administration’s commitment to the nuclear deal.

“In renewing waivers of U.S. sanctions, the Trump administration is once again grudgingly acknowledging that Iran continues to abide by its obligations under the agreement. Yet, the administration continues to stand in the way of what is legitimate trade with Iran, which the agreement obligates the United States not to do.

“It is also crucial that the administration cease questioning the integrity of a deal that according to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and our European allies is working.

“Trump’s constant incendiary remarks about the JCPOA are not exclusively political pandering to Washington hawks and the Saudi monarchs he will soon visit. It sends dangerous signals that undercut U.S. reliability and global leadership. It has already had a chilling effect on the sanctions relief promised under the deal, as banks and companies fear the U.S. will break its promises. And Trump’s threats give hardliners in Iran an upper hand to push for a more confrontational policy, while undermining moderates and reformists who have sought greater engagement with the West. 

“To the extent that the administration has a strategy, it appears to be to kill the nuclear deal without giving the appearance of violating it. Reissuing the waivers gives the appearance of compliance, while the uncertainty created by the administration’s attacks on the deal can be enough to cause its collapse and put the U.S. and Iran back on a path towards war.

“It is undeniable that the deal is in America’s national interest as it has blocked all of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear bomb. The Trump administration should not only renew the waivers, it should completely adhere to the deal and ensure that all parties benefit from being in compliance. The longer the deal lasts, the better off the United States will be.”

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