President Trump announced Tuesday afternoon that the U.S. will be reimposing nuclear sanctions on Iran, effectively ending the landmark 2015 agreement forged by the Obama administration to freeze the Iranian nuclear program.

“It is clear to me that we cannot prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb under the decaying and rotten structure of the current agreement. The Iran deal is defective at its core,” the president said.


Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, whose hawkish views on foreign policy are shared by recent Trump administration appointees such as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton, issued the following statement on Twitter:

The Atlantic’s Krishnadev Calamur
has a good explainer about what the American exit from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action means. European signatories to the JCPOA urged the U.S. to not tear up the deal — international inspectors had said Iran was largely in compliance with its terms — but hawks in the Trump administration said it was fatally flawed and didn’t do enough to constrain Iran’s military actions in the Middle East.


Barack Obama issued his own statement on the news. “Walking away from the JCPOA turns our back on America’s closest allies, and an agreement that our country’s leading diplomats, scientists, and intelligence professionals negotiated,” the former president wrote.

The BBC reports Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the nation was preparing to restart uranium enrichment, but that it would first speak with the other signatory members of the deal: the U.K., France, Germany, Russia and China. The JCPOA was a multilateral agreement between Iran and six nations, so although the withdrawal of the deal’s most powerful parnter — the U.S. — will undo its current structure, it’s possible Iran might reach an arrangement with the other nations and continue to keep its nuclear program on ice.