Donald Trump's U.N. ambassador says the president "has grounds" to declare that Iran is not complying with the 2015 nuclear deal… Nikki Haley, speaking Tuesday in Washington, said she did not know what Trump plans to do next month when he is due to certify to Congress whether Tehran is complying with the agreement. But she appeared to lay the groundwork for Trump to declare that Iran is in violation of the deal.
The United States might find Iran in violation of the 2015 nuclear agreement next month, but that does not mean Washington is withdrawing from the agreement, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations said on September 5. Under U.S. law, the State Department must notify Congress every 90 days whether Iran is in compliance with curbs on its nuclear activities required in exchange for international sanctions relief under the deal. The next deadline is October, and U.S. President Donald Trump has said he thinks by then the United States will find Iran out of compliance.
In the midst of a nuclear crisis with North Korea, the Trump administration signaled on Tuesday that it is paving the way for a simultaneous standoff with Iran, suggesting it could refuse to certify that Tehran is complying with the 2015 nuclear accord. But the administration could leave it up to Congress to decide whether to withdraw from the deal.
UANI IN THE NEWS
Well, I’m very grateful to the folks at United Against Nuclear Iran for asking me to chair the group because frankly it gives me an opportunity to continue work I did in the Senate that was focused on Iran. I believe long-term Iran, and a nuclear Iran, led by a radical Islamist government is the greatest threat to the security of the United States and to our allies.
“While Iran might be complying with the letter of the JCPOA [Iran deal] it’s been routinely violating its spirit, and that’s very problematic,” United Against A Nuclear Iran Policy Director Jason Brodsky previously explained to The Daily Caller News Foundation. Brodsky claimed that while Iran’s violations of the U.N. resolution codifying the nuclear deal may not show explicit Iranian procurement or development of nuclear material, it demonstrates a regime that continues to pursue programs that pose a threat to the U.S.
Major General Mohammad Bagheri, Chief of Staff of Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran, turned down Americans’ request for coordination in the Persian Gulf… “Coordinating with American warships in the Persian Gulf for Iran is ridiculous,” said the general describing the demand of Americans as avarice, “If something happens to Iranian oil rigs in the Persian Gulf, will the foreign warships bear the responsibility.”
NORTH KOREA AND IRAN
“What people need to understand is that Iran can be where North Korea is” in a short time, Dr. Emily Landau, an INSS expert on the two countries, told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday. To prevent this from happening, the world must up its game “in devising a strategy to increase pressure on Iran” with a combination of increased truly biting sanctions, isolation and the threat of a military option, she said… Landau said there have always been concerns about the North transferring nuclear weapons technology to Iran, since “they are ready to share and sell to anyone as long as they get hard cash... this has been going on for years.”
Israel is worried about the impact an unchecked rogue nuclear state could have on Iran's own military ambitions. “Only a determined international response [to North Korea] will prevent other states from behaving in the same way,” Israel’s Foreign Ministry said in a rare response to the North Korean nuclear crisis.
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said Wednesday that threats by the United States had pushed North Korea to test nuclear weapons and were a "dangerous game for the entire world."
Iran’s talk of a possible rapprochement was laughable, Saudi Arabia's foreign minister told reporters in London on Tuesday. Adel al-Jubeir said Iran would have to change its policies for any rapprochement. Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, last month said they would soon exchange diplomatic visits after the regional rivals severed diplomatic ties last year. “The comments of the foreign minister are laughable,” al-Jubeir said. “If Iran wants to have good relations with Saudi Arabia, it has to change its policies. It has to respect international law.”
A rights group is alleging Iran purposely left an imprisoned journalist’s cancer undetected to the point that he had to lose an eye and part of his face after being released. New York-based Center for Human Rights for Iran said Tuesday the blame for 54-year-old Alireza Rajaei having to undergo the surgery should be placed on Iranian prison authorities. Rajaei, a pro-reform journalist, served four years beginning in 2011 on the charge of acting against national security and making anti-government propaganda.
A family of four in Iran has launched a symbolic protest against the cancellation of concerts around the country on religious grounds. In recent years, dozens of concerts and cultural performances have been abruptly called off in Iran following pressure and intimidation by hard-liners who claim such events undermine Islamic values. The closures of the officially sanctioned concerts have been a direct challenge to Iranian President Hassan Rohani, a relative moderate, who has promised to ease state restrictions and give Iranians more rights and freedom.
“Women get absolutely zero for supporting [Hassan] Rouhani! If we hadn’t voted in this election, does Rouhani think he would have gotten re-elected with the numbers he did?” Leila, a 34-year-old women’s rights activist, shot off in an angry text on Telegram after it was revealed that Iran’s president had not nominated any women to join his second-term Cabinet. “Even [Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad had a woman as a minister!” Ava responded in the private group for young women’s rights activists, referring to the conservative former president’s 2009 appointment of Marzieh Vahid Dastjerdi as the Islamic Republic’s first female minister.
Iranian media are reporting that protesters have demonstrated in a western town where border guards earlier shot dead two Kurdish men. The unrest happened Tuesday in Baneh, which is near the Iraqi border and its semi-autonomous Kurdish region. A report by yjc.ir, which is affiliated with state television, said five border guards were arrested after the protests with the aim of calming tensions.
The son of a prominent reformist politician ignited a firestorm on social-media when he said he owes his success in life to "good genes." The comments by Hamid Reza Aref, the son of former Vice President Mohammad Reza Aref, currently the head of the reformist faction in parliament, quickly led to a #goodgenes hashtag that has heaped scorn on the 39-year-old successful businessman and on cronyism in Iran in general.
OPINION & ANALYSIS
An emerging pattern in the Trump administration is to declare opposition to an Obama executive action but then leave the actual work of dealing with the consequences of that decision to Congress. That’s what President Trump did Tuesday with immigration, and it’s what U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley said Tuesday might happen with the Iran nuclear deal.
The western Asian nation of Iran is on the cusp of expanding its reach all the way to the Mediterranean Sea and Israel's northern border – a drive that will make its nuclear pursuit, ballistic missile development and terror sponsorship that much more dangerous to the United States and its regional allies. This budding hegemony is a product of Iran's growing presence in, or influence over, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. It is being accomplished through Tehran's own political or military activities, through the growing regional activities of its most important terrorist client, Hezbollah, and through Shiite militias that are pursuing Iranian interests in Syria and Iraq.