Trump says he agrees with idea of replacing Obama-era Iran deal with his own
President Trump on Tuesday night said he agreed with the suggestion to replace the Obama-era Iran nuclear deal with a new pact negotiated by his own administration.
“Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, @BorisJohnson, stated, ‘We should replace the Iran deal with the Trump deal.’ I agree!” the president tweeted.
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, @BorisJohnson, stated, “We should replace the Iran deal with the Trump deal.” I agree!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14, 2020
Prime Minister Boris Johnson in an interview with the BBC on Tuesday made the suggestion after emphasizing the need to prevent Tehran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. He noted that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, better known as the Iran nuclear deal, was enacted to do just that. Trump announced he was withdrawing the U.S. from the deal in May 2018.
“Well, if we’re going to get rid of it, let’s replace it,” Johnson said in the interview. “Let’s replace it with the ‘Trump deal.’ “
It’s not clear what a “Trump deal” would entail, or if Trump even views the idea as serious. But it comes amid international concerns over the spiraling tensions between Washington and Tehran, which reached a fever pitch earlier in January after Trump approved a drone strike that killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, leader of the elite Quds Force.
Soleimani’s killing was met with retaliation from Iran, which shortly afterward launched missile strikes at a military base in Iraq housing U.S. troops. No fatalities were reported in the immediate aftermath, but it was later revealed that Tehran inadvertently shot down a commercial airline flight during the attack, killing all passengers on board. The downing of the plane, and the government’s stalled admission that it was to blame, has sparked anti-government protests in Iran over the past several days.
Trump himself has defended the killing of Soleimani, whom he referred to as a “son of a bitch” during a rally in Wisconsin earlier on Tuesday night, even as he has drawn condemnation from other countries. Trump used much of his time at the rally to tout his foreign policy in the Middle East, during which he also praised the Iranian protesters and slammed former President Obama’s decision to sign on to the Iran deal.
The president has said in the past that he would meet with his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, though a planned meeting between the two leaders at the United Nations last fall unraveled at the last minute.
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