On 17 May 2017, the Trump Administration signaled that the Iran Nuclear Deal, i.e. JCPOA, is here to stay, at least for now. Despite President Trump’s fierce criticism on the deal, it now appears that he will not scrap the deal. This is the second certification of the JCPOA by the Trump Administration, as I stated elsewhere, the U.S. certified that the JCPOA is working. In this context, the U.S. Administration has to certify the functioning of the deal in order to avoid the triggering of U.S. sanctions, which could open the path for Iran to restart it’s controversial nuclear program. However, the stated review by the Trump Administration on the deal with Iran, continues.
This comes as no surprise, given that its questionable whether U.S. close allies would be prepared to jettison the JCPOA and even restart the imposition of sanctions.
The timing of the announcement, despite the imposed deadline to certify the JCPOA, comes two days before the Iranian elections and President Trump’s first foreign trip – funny enough to Saudi Arabia and Israel which both oppose the deal.
The U.S.’ ambivalent reaction could be a mixed message for the Iranian electorate.
It could strengthen the hand of reformers, whom wish to give the deal a chance so that Iran can continue to rehabilitate itself. While hardliners can use the American reaction as more evidence that the deal is not working and possibly revert back to a stand-off with the international community. Well, we’ll see how wins in a couple of days.
At least for now, the deal is still working; let’s hope that it stays that way.