Iran nuclear deal concerns raised by group of US Democrats in Congress

Iran nuclear deal concerns raised by group of US Democrats in Congress
A group of Democratic members of Congress have come together in a joint letter to express their concerns over the US' re-negotiation of the Iran nuclear deal.
2 min read
Washington, D.C.
08 April, 2022
America's re-negotiation of the Iran nuclear deal is raising concerns among some Democratic members of Congress, who have issued a joint letter to express their worries. (Getty)

Eighteen Democratic members of Congress have signed a joint letter voicing concerns over the possible negative consequences of the US renegotiating the Iran nuclear deal.

With the new deal now in its final stages of negotiations in Vienna, several Congress members have contributed one paragraph to the joint letter with opinions ranging from not wanting the deal at all to assurances Iran will never be able to obtain nuclear weapons.

The nuclear deal, or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) as it is formally known, was signed by former President Barack Obama in 2015 to limit Iran's nuclear ambitions, in exchange for an easing of US sanctions on Tehran.

Former President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the pact in 2018 and enforced tough new penalties on Iran, effectively ending the deal.

"As the Vienna negotiations come to a close, we cannot treat the FTO designation - one of our most powerful diplomatic tools used to get cold-blooded killers out of the terrorist business - as a cheap bargaining chip. If Iran, the world's leading state sponsor of terror, has proven anything, it's that they can’t be trusted," said Congressman Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, going on to draw connections between Iran and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Gottheimer appeared to be referring to reported plans to take the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) off the US's list of designated terrorist organisations.

"I want to make something abundantly clear," said Congressman Dean Phillips of Minnesota. "I am not opposed to an agreement. I am opposed to an agreement that does not absolutely, positively prevent Iran from either producing or obtaining [a] nuclear weapon. I believe I speak for an overwhelming majority of the United States Congress to that end."

The letter’s signatories include Reps. Gottheimer (NJ-5), Luria (VA-2), Norcross (NJ-1), Vargas (CA-51), Phillips (MN-3), Boyle (PA-2), Brown (OH-11), Costa (CA-16), Demings (FL-10), Frankel (FL-21), Golden (ME-02), González (TX-15), Lee (NV-3), Manning (NC-6), Meng (NY-6), Soto (FL-9), Stevens (MI-11), and Suozzi (NY-3).

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