Iran vows retaliation over U.S. sanctions

Iran vows retaliation over U.S. sanctions

USA president Donald Trump yesterday declared he would extend the controversial Iran nuclear deal for another year, adding that he was giving Europe and the U.S. a last chance to address the "terrible flaws" in the 2015 agreement.

By thus "decertifying" the arrangement, he opened a window for Congress to reimpose sanctions, but to date, it has not done so - leaving the issue of the waivers.

"We are gradually coming to the conclusion that an internal decision by the U.S. to leave the (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) has already been made or is close to being made", Ryabkov said in an interview with Interfax news agency.

But Trump argues that Obama gave away too much to Iran in sanctions relief, without forcing the Islamic republic to end its ballistic missile program and support for militant groups.

Russian Federation - one of the parties to the Iran pact alongside the United States, China, France, Britain, Germany and the European Union - called Trump's comments "extremely negative".

"The UK has a clear position on the Iran nuclear deal: we regard it as a crucial agreement that makes the world a safer place by neutralizing the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran", the British Foreign Office said.

On Friday, Trump again waived sanctions against Iran that were lifted as part of the landmark nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Trump has previously described the nuclear agreement as "the worst deal ever negotiated", even though Iran has been repeatedly found to be in full compliance.

Trump has already declared that he thinks the Iran nuclear deal is no longer in the United States' national interest.

Also on Friday, the USA imposed separate sanctions against 14 Iranian individuals and entities it accuses of rights abuses, censorship and support for weapons proliferators.

"Instead, I have outlined two possible paths forward: either fix the deal's disastrous flaws, or the United States will withdraw".

European allies had strongly urged the White House to stick with the nuclear deal, saying a decision to abandon it would strain the transatlantic partnership.

He further claimed, "This is a last chance".

Britain, France and Germany had called on Trump on Thursday to uphold the pact. He said remaining in the pact will give Congress more time to come up with bipartisan legislation regarding Iran.

"The Chinese side has also noticed that the global community widely supports the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and fully acknowledges Iran's implementation of the pact, " Lu said.

He said Iran's restraint on long-range ballistic missile programs also must be linked to sanctions relief.

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