May 8, 2018 1:27 pm
Updated: May 8, 2018 11:18 pm

Donald Trump withdraws from Iran nuclear deal

WATCH ABOVE: U.S. President Donald Trump has announced plans to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. Jackson Proskow reports on what that could mean for Iran's weapons programs.

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U.S. President Donald Trump announced Tuesday that he is withdrawing from the historic Iran nuclear deal.

“This was a one-sided deal that should have never, ever been made,” Trump said during an address at the White House.

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The president explained that the U.S. will begin enforcing the “highest level” of sanctions on the Iranian regime. The sanctions will target key parts of the country’s economy such as energy and financial sectors.

READ MORE: Here’s what to know about the Iran nuclear deal

In 2015, former president Barack Obama and the leaders of the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China, Germany and the European Union reached an agreement with Iran that required it to curb its nuclear program. In exchange, the deal lifted some sanctions on Tehran that had previously hindered its economy.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran was set to expire in 2025.

WATCH: Trump on Iran deal, “If I allowed it to stand, there would be nuclear arms race”

Trump said Tuesday that the deal was “a great embarrassment” to all American citizens from the very beginning, and has only helped Iran develop its nuclear capabilities.

The president noted that he’s repeatedly asked for the deal to be fixed, and that has not occurred. He has criticized the deal because it does not address Iran‘s ballistic missile program, its nuclear activities beyond 2025, nor its role in conflicts in Yemen and Syria.

READ MORE: ‘There could be war,’ France’s Emmanuel Macron warns if Trump withdraws from Iran deal

Iran has previously threatened it would restart its nuclear program if the U.S. reimposed sanctions.

On Tuesday, Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani, warned the country could face “some problems,” just hours before Trump announced his decision.


“It is possible that we will face some problems for two or three months, but we will pass through this,” Rouhani said.

Rouhani also stressed Iran wants to keep “working with the world and constructive engagement with the world.” That appeared to be a nod to Europe, which has struck a series of business deals with Iran since the landmark 2015 nuclear deal.

Reactions around the world

Many countries reacted to the withdrawal moments after Trump’s announcement.

Among those supportive of the move was Saudi Arabia. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also made a televised address after Trump’s announcement, lauding the U.S. president’s hard tack on Iran.

Response from Europe was not nearly as optimistic.

The top European Union diplomat, Federica Mogherini, called on the international community to stick to the Iran nuclear deal despite Trump’s decision.

“The European Union is determined to preserve it,” she said. “Together with the rest of the international community, we will preserve this nuclear deal.”

 

— With files from Reuters, The Associated Press

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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