What If Trump Leaves the Iran Deal?

by | Apr 24, 2018

Jacob Heilbrunn interviews Iranian Foreign Minister Muhammad Javad Zarif.

Jacob Heilbrunn: President Trump has until May 12 to make a decision on the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action). What happens if he does indeed announce that the U.S. is officially withdrawing?

Mohammad Javad Zarif: Well, you made a pertinent point: officially withdrawing. Because the United States, under President Trump, has really not been a part of the JCPOA, has violated almost every U.S. commitment under the JCPOA, so we’ve had almost sixteen months of a trial period for official withdrawal. If the United States officially withdraws from the JCPOA, the immediate implication would be that it would free Iran of any obligation to remain in the JCPOA. Whether that would lead Iran to immediately withdraw or not, that’s a decision that we will adopt, but that’s the most likely outcome of our response to President Trump

Jacob Heilbrunn: Would that also include withdrawing from the NPT (Non-Proliferation Treaty), potentially?

Mohammad Javad Zarif: Well, there are some people in Iran who are talking about that. That’s not, certainly, the government’s position. But we have very active public opinion and we have always been responsive to public opinion. But what I see in the cards as the first stage of our response to U.S. official withdrawal would be to contemplate also withdrawing from the JCPOA.

About Scott Horton

Scott Horton is director of the Libertarian Institute, editorial director of Antiwar.com, host of Antiwar Radio on Pacifica, 90.7 FM KPFK in Los Angeles, California and podcasts the Scott Horton Show from ScottHorton.org. He's the author of the 2021 book Enough Already: Time to End the War on Terrorism, the 2017 book, Fool's Errand:Time to End the War in Afghanistan, editor of the 2019 book The Great Ron Paul: The Scott Horton Show Interviews 2004–2019 and the 2022 book Hotter Than The Sun: Time to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. He’s conducted more than 6,000 interviews since 2003. Scott lives in Austin, Texas with his wife, Larisa Alexandrovna Horton.

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