Just before a midnight deadline on Tuesday, the Trump administration informed Congress that Iran is living up to the terms of a 2015 nuclear deal brokered under former President Barack Obama, and was thus eligible for extended sanctions relief. During the 2016 campaign, President Trump was a vocal critic of the deal, negotiated between Iran, the U.S., and five other world powers, but he has given mixed signals on his intentions since taking office. The agreement rolls back Iran's nuclear programs in return for unfreezing billions in Iranian assets.
In a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson certified Iran's compliance, but said the Trump administration is undertaking an interagency review of the deal, led by the National Security Council, to see if it "is vital to the national security interests of the United States." Iran, he added, "remains a leading state sponsor of terror, through many platforms and methods." The Islamic republic is still subject to non-nuclear sanctions and remains on the State Department's list of state sponsors of terrorism. The White House must update Congress on Iran's compliance every 90 days. Peter Weber