Iran warns against US 'wrong move' on nuclear deal

COMPILED FROM WIRE SERVICES
ISTANBUL
Published 17.09.2017 23:10

Iran would react strongly to any "wrong move" by the United States on Tehran's nuclear deal, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said, after President Donald Trump accused Iran of violating the "spirit" of the agreement.

"The Iranian nation is standing firm and any wrong move by the domineering regime regarding the [nuclear accord] will face the reaction of the Islamic Republic," state television quoted Ayatollah Khamenei as saying on Sunday.

Washington extended some sanctions relief for Iran last Thursday under Tehran's 2015 deal with world powers but said it had yet to decide whether to maintain the agreement.

"Today, despite all the commitments and discussions in the negotiations, America's attitude towards these negotiations and their outcome is completely unjust and amounts to bullying," Khamenei said.

"The Americans should know that the Iranian people will stand firm on their honorable positions and on important issues related to national interests, there will be no retreat by the Islamic Republic," Khamenei said in a speech to Iranian military academy graduates.

Iran said last month it could abandon

the nuclear agreement "within hours" if the United States imposes any new penalties, after Washington ordered sanctions over Tehran's ballistic missile tests.

The United States imposed unilateral sanctions after saying the missile tests violated a U.N. resolution, which endorsed the nuclear deal and called upon Tehran not to undertake activities related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such technology. It stopped short of explicitly barring such activity. Iran denies its missile development breaches the resolution, saying its missiles are not designed to carry nuclear weapons.

The nuclear deal under former President Barack Obama saw Iran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.

Trump has called the agreement between Iran and six major powers reducing its nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief "the worst deal ever negotiated." Trump has to certify in mid-October whether he believes Iran is abiding by the nuclear deal and that sticking to it is vital to U.S. national security interests. If, as seems increasingly likely, he decides not to give the green light, Congress will then have 60 days to debate whether to reimpose sanctions on Iran.

Despite the 2015 so-called nuke deal aiming to curb Iran's nuclear power and to lift international sanctions against the country, the U.S. is worried about the Tehran government and its activities in the region. The deal offered Iran relief from international sanctions in exchange for curbs on its nuclear program.

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