Trump’s New Team Sets Hard-Line Policy Toward Iran

Trump’s New Team Sets Hard-Line Policy Toward Iran

Saturday, 17 March, 2018 - 06:30
Pompeo testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, US, February 13, 2018. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein/File
London - Vienna - Asharq Al-Awsat
The recent changes introduced by US President Donald Trump to his administration consolidate his stance against Iran and indicate that he intends to quit the nuclear deal, Western diplomatic sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired by Trump on March 13. He was replaced by CIA Director Mike Pompeo.

Trump, who has set a May 12 deadline to withdraw from the Iran nuclear accord unless European allies "fix" it, said that Pompeo’s nomination is “bad news” for the fate of the deal.

Pompeo, who awaits Congress’ approval of his nomination, is equally as hard line on Iran and a harsh critic of the head of the Syrian regime, Bashar Assad, the sources said.

Unlike Tillerson, he also criticizes Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, they told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Trump now has Pompeo on his side in any decision he will take regarding the nuclear deal, the sources said.

They added that Trump wants to achieve a breakthrough in his negotiations with North Korea regarding its nuclear weapons program before any announcement on Iran.

Meanwhile, a German newspaper said that French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are expected to travel to Washington to convince Trump not to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.

The report came as Britain, France and Germany proposed fresh EU sanctions on Iran over its ballistic missiles, Reuters said.

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