Trump admin orders review of Iran nuclear deal sanctions

"Iran remains a leading state sponsor of terror, through many platforms and methods", Tillerson wrote.

"The US Department of State certified to US House Speaker Paul Ryan today that Iran is compliant through April 18 with its commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action", Tillerson said in a statement.

An inter-agency review has been ordered by the Trump administration to check whether the suspension of sanctions on Iran under a landmark nuclear deal in 2015 was in the US' national security interests, the secretary of state has said.

"I think it was the worst deal I've ever seen negotiated", Trump told Fox News. Tuesday's was the first update for the Trump administration. The NSC-led review will investigate whether lifting sanctions against the world's top sponsor of terror may not be in the USA national interest.

The deal saw Iran commit to limit its development of nuclear material in return for the lifting of oil and financial sanctions worth billions of dollars.

"When the inter-agency review is completed, the administration looks forward to working with Congress on this issue", Tillerson said.

Defense Secretary James Mattis said last month that Iran continues to export terrorism and sponsor the activity of its ally Hezbollah, a Lebanon-based terrorist group.

But his predecessor Barack Obama insisted the deal was the best way to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons.

Iran has said many times that if the US imposed additional sanctions, that would violate the nuclear deal and Iran would no longer feel bound by its terms.

Under the terms of the deal, Iran has agreed to reduce its stockpile of low-enriched uranium by 98% and significantly scale back its number of installed centrifuges. "The two leaders spoke at length about the dangers posed by the nuclear deal with Iran and by Iran's malevolent behavior in the region and about the need to work together to counter those dangers", read a statement about the call from Netanyahu's office.

Then-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn said the administration was putting Iran "on notice", but it was unclear what steps it would to take, although the imposition of sanctions was one measure considered.

  • Elsie Buchanan