President Trump announced Tuesday that he will not renew the Iran nuclear deal, defying European allies and escalating tensions with an Iranian regime that vowed not to return to the negotiating table should the U.S. withdraw from the Obama-era nonproliferation agreement.
“It is clear to me we cannot prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb, under the decaying and rotten structure of the current agreement..the Iran deal is defective at its core,” Trump said during his announcement from the White House.
“If the regime continues its nuclear aspirations it will have bigger problems than it has ever had before,” he added.
The announcement marks the beginning of a 90 day delay period, after which the U.S. will reimpose the harsh economic sanctions that were lifted in 2015 in exchange for the regime’s commitment to cease developing its nuclear program for ten years, according to Fox News. Trump has repeatedly maligned the 2015 deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, calling it “one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.”
Trump and his newly-minted national security advisor John Bolton believe the agreement does not grant international inspectors enough access to verify Iranian compliance and serves only to provide Iran a temporary respite from crippling economic sanctions until the ten-year deadline is reached, at which point the regime will be free to continue building its nuclear program.