Boris Johnson Courts Trump On Iran Deal
UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has urged US President Donald Trump not to “throw the baby out with the bathwater” by tearing up the Iran nuclear deal.
Appearing on Fox News’ morning show, Mr Trump’s favourite, Mr Johnson said the 2015 accord was not perfect.
President Trump must decide whether to stick with the agreement – which he has called “insane” – by 12 May.
Under the international deal, Iran has limited its nuclear activities in return for eased economic sanctions.
While in Washington, Mr Johnson will not meet the president. But he will meet US Vice-President Mike Pence, National Security Adviser John Bolton and foreign policy leaders in Congress.
The British foreign secretary tried appealing to the president via fox & Friends, which Mr Trump is known to regularly tune into.
Mr Johnson began by saying Mr Trump “is right to see the flaws in” the deal.
He said countries have “got to be tougher on Iran” and “fix the flaws in the deal”.
But he warned that without a deal, Iran could develop a nuclear weapon and start an arms race among countries in the region.
Mr Johnson concluded that “plan B does not seem, to me, to be particularly well developed at this stage”.
In remarks carried live on state television, he said Iran had “a plan to counter any decision Trump may take and we will confront it”.
But he also hinted Iran could work out a deal with other signatories, excluding the US.
Mr Rouhani said: “If we can get what we want from a deal without America, then Iran will continue to remain committed to the deal. But if not, Tehran will continue its own path.”
Iran has said the documents produced by Israel were a rehash of old allegations already dealt with by the UN’s nuclear watchdog.
What is the Iran deal?
In 2015 Tehran signed a deal with the US, China, Russia, Germany, France and Britain agreeing to limit its nuclear activities in return for the lifting of crippling economic sanctions.
Under the deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran is committed to slashing the number of its centrifuges, which are machines used to enrich uranium.
It is also meant to cut its stockpile of enriched uranium drastically and not enrich remaining uranium to the level needed to produce nuclear weapons.
The number of centrifuges installed at Iran’s Natanz and Fordo sites was cut drastically soon after the deal while tonnes of low-enriched uranium were shipped to Russia.
Furthermore, monitors from the IAEA have been able to carry out snap inspections at Iranian nuclear sites.