Tillerson: Iran complying with nuclear deal but is 'leading sponsor of terror'

By Andrew V. Pestano Follow @AVPLive9 Contact the Author   |   April 19, 2017 at 7:00 AM
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April 19 (UPI) -- U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that although Iran is complying with the nuclear agreement, the Islamic republic is still a "leading state sponsor of terror."

Tillerson made the comment in a letter he sent Tuesday to U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan in which he suggested an evaluation of whether sanctions should be reinstated.

Under former President Barack Obama's administration, Iran, China, France, Russia, Britain, United States, Germany and the European Union signed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action nuclear agreement in 2015.

Tillerson said Iran has complied with the agreement's terms through Tuesday, the day he released the letter.

"Iran remains a leading state sponsor of terror through many platforms and methods. President Donald J. Trump has directed a National Security Council-led interagency review of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that will evaluate whether suspension of sanctions related to Iran pursuant to the JCPOA is vital to the national security interests of the United States," Tillerson wrote. "When the interagency review is completed, the administration looks forward to working with Congress on this issue."

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who last week announced his candidacy for Iran's upcoming presidential election, recently said the JCPOA is one of the most important issues for Iran. He said those attempting to undermine or destroy the JCPA will not succeed, adding that those countries involved in the agreement should follow through -- perhaps a statement directed at the United States and Trump, who said the deal is one of the worst in history.

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