Tillerson’s removal could doom Iran nuclear deal: report [The Nation] 14 Mar, 2018

The nuclear deal with Iran US reached in 2015 with the help of world powers seems in jeopardy after President Trump on Tuesday sacked Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who had resisted his desire to annul the accord, a news report said. Trump and Tillerson had differed publically on major foreign policy issues the US faced , including North Korea and Iran’s nuclear deal, which had fueled speculation for months that Tillerson would soon be replaced. President Trump once again used the social media platform, Twitter, to announce the major decision which, in spite of an expected outcome, still surprised many after Tillerson’s statements that he had no plan to leave his job. “The Iran nuclear deal might have died Tuesday,” said the lead story published in the online magazine, The POLITICO, which alluded to the possibility as a possible upshot of Tillerson’s ouster, who is being replaced by CIA Director Mike Pompeo, a close confidant of President Trump who had supported his stance of major foreign policy issues, including Iran. Trump had long expressed his resentment of the deal that was concluded by President Barack Obama with the help of China, Russia, the European Union, the UK, France and Germany, calling it “the worst deal ever”. While, President Trump had disagreement with Tillerson on several foreign policy issues, he only mentioned the Iran deal, when he spoke about his decision at the White House on Tuesday. ”When you look at the Iran deal – I think it’s terrible, I guess he thought it was OK. I wanted to either break it or do something and he felt a little bit differently. So we were not really thinking the same,” he was quoted as saying the magazine. Pompeo is considered a hawkish on the nuclear accord and had called for “rolling back this disastrous deal”, according to the report which added that he had also called for the US to taking a more hardline approach to bring down Tehran’s Islamist regime. Giving credence to speculations about the fate of Iran’s nuclear deal, Mark Dubowitz, an executive of the Foundation for Defense Democracies, who is seen close to the Trump administration, said: “For anybody who thought Trump was bluffing about his May 12 deadline to fix the deal or nix it, the appointment of Mike Pompeo as secretary of state should be a wakeup call.” US President Trump has to decide, under the law, to whether to continue waiving US nuclear sanctions, or re-impose them, which would potentially kill the deal. President Trump has demanded new limits to Iran’s ballistic missile testing.

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