Tillerson accuses Iran of 'alarming provocations' as U.S. reviews policy

Bruno Cirelli
Aprile 21, 2017

Speaking to reporters at the State Department, Tillerson said the USA was ultimately at risk of going to nuclear war with the Middle East nation, should it decide to keep building more missiles, much like the Hermit Kingdom has been doing.

But Tillerson is leaving open the possibility that the Trump administration will uphold it anyway.

The letter marked the first notice to Congress from the Trump administration regarding Iran's compliance with the agreement, as is required every 90 days under the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Tillerson spoke after the State Department certified to Congress that Iran is now in compliance with its obligations under the 2015 deal.

He said the Trump administration had no intention of passing the buck to a future administration on Iran.

While Tillerson said the United States would not intend to walk away from the landmark accord, he argued the deal was merely a way for Iran to delay the development of a nuclear weapon.

Tillerson went on to say that "whether it be assassination attempts, support of weapons of mass destruction, deploying destabilizing militias, Iran spends its treasure and time disrupting peace".

US officials have long called Iran the number one state sponsor of terrorism.

"If this happens our credibility will be forever undermined, not only with Iran, but with the other world powers the United States negotiated with to achieve the JCPOA".

The charges of Iranian "destabilization" stem from Iran's objective position as Washington's rival for regional hegemony in the Middle East and its participation, alongside Russian Federation, in defending the government of Syria against the US-orchestrated war for regime change.

The US has been exploring ways to address the threat of North Korea's nuclear programme, which is significantly farther along than Iran's. There is little room to interpret this statement as anything less than a proclamation of the Trump administration's intent to scrap the nuclear deal and reset the United States on a path to war. The administration added, however that the agreement is under review.

Asked if the White House was concerned that tougher sanctions on Iran could motivate it to violate the agreement, Spicer said: "We're well aware of any potential negative impacts that an action could have". Tuesday's determination suggested that while Trump agreed with findings by the U.N.'s nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, that Iran is keeping to its end of the bargain, he is looking for another way to ratchet up pressure on Tehran. "So right now what we're seeing is the nations in the region...trying to checkmate Iran and the amount of disruption and instability they can cause".

He also said he thought the threshold for any US withdrawal from the JCPOA would be "quite high", given that it could have "very significant diplomatic consequences" for Washington.

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