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Brody: Trump Wants Out of Iran Deal, but Timing Isn't Right

07-18-2017
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Chief Political Correspondent David Brody says Trump wants out of the Iran Nuclear Deal, but the timing isn't right.

President Trump wants out of the Iran nuclear deal, but his advisors believe the time is not right, according to CBN Chief Political Correspondent David Brody.

"He was close to doing it," Brody told CBN's Gary Lane. "Look, he listened to the folks who know this issue best: H.R. McMaster, General Mattis, and also Rex Tillerson, so there was this long meeting at the White House and they all said, 'Look you gotta stay in the deal.'"

The Trump administration says Iran is technically complying with the deal, but not acting in the spirit of the agreement, which could open the door for the U.S. to pull out. 

"He wants to get out of the deal, I think what we'll see at this point is a 90-day plan that McMaster and others are going to come up with to make it somehow a tighter enforcement situation where Trump can have some leeway to get out of the deal," Brody said. 

The U.S. has to decide whether to recertify the deal every 90 days.

Monday, the Trump administration agreed to keep the deal in place, saying Iran is following the terms of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which curbed their program in exchange for sanctions relief.

Under the terms of the two-year-old agreement, Tehran scaled back their production of nuke-making material so they could get sanction relief. 

However, the Trump administration critiqued Iran's non-nuclear activities, saying they are "unquestionably in default of the spirit" of the deal. 

On Tuesday, it slapped 18 Iranian individuals and groups with sanctions over Iran's ballistic missiles program and other non-nuclear behavior.

The U.S. is also considering sanctions against Iranian entities in order to target the country's ballistic missile program and state sponsorship of terrorism. 

"The secretary of state–and the President–intends to emphasize that Iran remains one of the most dangerous threats to the U.S. and to regional security," a senior administration official said. 

"Moving forward, the administration intends to employ a strategy that will address the totality of Iran's malign behavior and not just focus on the nuclear deal," the official told AP. 

Trump denounced the deal during his campaign and promised to renegotiate it and get tough on Iran. 

The White House stresses that it will not go soft on Iran, pointing to new non-nuclear sanctions and stricter implementation of the deal. 

"We do expect that we will be implementing new sanctions that pertain to Iran's ballistic missile program and fast boat program," a White House official noted. 

"Iran remains one of the most dangerous threats to U.S. interests and regional stability," the official added. 

Iran's foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif arrived in New York on Monday to attend a UN forum on development, and said he has not discussed the nuclear deal with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. 

"There are no communications between myself and Secretary Tillerson," Zarif said. "It doesn't mean there can't be. The possibilities for engagement... have always been open." 

"We receive contradictory signals," Zarif added.

The five nuclear powers – China, Russia, France, Britain, the United States – plus Germany, are planning to meet this Friday to take stock of the deal. 

This all comes after a Chinese-American student was recently sentenced to 10 years in an Iranian prison for so-called "spying."

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