Iran says it won't accept Trump's demands to change nuclear deal

Iran says it won't accept Trump's demands to change nuclear deal

Iran says it won't accept Trump's demands to change nuclear deal

People the USA sanctioned on Friday include Ayatollah Sadegh Amoli Larijani, the head of Iran's judiciary whose brother, Ali Larijani, leads Iran's parliament.

Iran "will not accept any amendments in this agreement, be it now or in the future, and it will not allow any other issues to be linked to the JCPOA", the foreign ministry said in a statement, using the 2015 deal's technical name.

Trump announced on Friday that the US would keep the pact in place and waive sanctions against Iran for the "last time", in order to secure agreement from the US' European allies to fix its "terrible flaws".

The U.S. Treasury Department has sanctioned 14 companies and individuals in Iran and China - in connection with alleged human rights violations and weapons proliferation.

Describing sanctions against Larijani as "hostile action", the foreign ministry said the move "crossed all the red lines of conduct in the global community".

Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had earlier said on Twitter that Trump's decision undermined the multilateral agreement.

Trump said that any legislation regarding Iran must demand worldwide inspections when requested at all sites, must ensure Iran doesn't come close to possessing a nuclear weapon, must not have any expiration date and must state that long-range missile and nuclear weapons programs are inseparable. It does, however, likely mean that in four months we'll again be facing the question of whether the USA intends to withdraw from the deal outright.

Iran will counter a possible USA move to scrap the 2015 nuclear deal with rapid response that could surprise the Americans, a senior Iranian Foreign Ministry official warned Wednesday.

"I hereby call on key European countries to join with the United States in fixing significant flaws in the deal, countering Iranian aggression, and supporting the Iranian people", Mr. Trump said in the statement.

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Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) didn't like the idea of waiving Iran's nuclear sanctions.

As part of an agreement with Congress, the president has to sign a waiver suspending the sanctions every 120 days.

A report this week by analysts at the NY financial services company Citigroup said any move to weaken the nuclear deal would cause the "dislocation of at least 500,000 barrels a day of Iranian crude oil exports, especially those going to Korea and Japan, as well as to some European countries", according to CNBC.

Iran has been abundantly clear that it will not renegotiate the deal. "We are also targeting Iran's ballistic missile program and destabilizing activities, which it continues to prioritize over the economic well-being of the Iranian people".

Russia's deputy foreign minister, Sergei Ryabkov, described Mr Trump's comments as "extremely negative". The official said his action on Friday "will be the last such waiver he will issue".

He was prepared to back a modification to the existing deal if it were made permanent, one official said.

A decision to withhold a waiver would have effectively ended the deal that limits Iran's nuclear program.

Mr Trump was a fierce critic during the 2016 election campaign, calling it the "worse deal ever" and promising to scrap it if he became president.

That possibility is likely to be a big deal if the world tries to call Trump's bluff on the four month ultimatum, as he's always been inclined to kill the deal, but would look foolish if he tried to kill the deal only to have it continue without United States involvement, effectively removing the USA from the nations involved in enforcement of the terms.

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