London, Paris, Berlin Propose New Iran Sanctions to Meet Trump Ultimatum

18 March, 2018, 01:55 | Author: Chad Mckenzie
  • Outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson making a statement on his departure at the State Department in Washington D.C. on March 13

The proposal is part of an European Union strategy to save the accord that curbs Tehran's ability to develop nuclear weapons, namely by showing US President Donald Trump that there are other ways to counter Iranian power overseas.

Yesterday senior US State Department official Brian Hook said that President Donald Trump wanted to reach a "supplemental" deal with the European signatories to the Iran nuclear deal.

Iran, of course, doesn't have a nuclear weapons program, and didn't have such a program for years before the deal was made. Following the session, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi reportedly held a separate meeting with the United States delegation.

Analysts say the nuclear agreement could collapse if Washington pulls out.

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This would cover Iran's ballistic missile programme, its regional activities, the expiration of parts of the nuclear deal in the mid-2020s and tighter United Nations inspections, Hook said.

Senior diplomats from Iran and six major powers gathered in Vienna on Friday to discuss the status of their 2015 nuclear deal in a meeting overshadowed by USA threats to leave the pact.

"There is a lot we agree on and where we disagree we are working to bridge our differences", he said in Vienna.

The meeting of the commission, tasked with monitoring the implementation of the nuclear deal, was held as US President Donald Trump has issued an ultimatum to European countries that the US will walk away from the 2015 agreement in mid-May unless they join Washington in addressing what he alleges are its "fatal flaws".

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Tillerson and his erstwhile cabinet ally Defense Secretary Jim Mattis had urged Trump to listen to the Europeans to preserve the agreement.

Since the historic deal was signed in Vienna, the IAEA has repeatedly confirmed Iran's compliance with its commitments under the JCPOA, but some other parties, especially the U.S., have failed to live up to their undertakings.

Pompeo, head of the Central Intelligence Agency, is seen as taking a harder line on Iran.

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