The United States is determined to take a comprehensive approach to the Iranian regime because of the wide-ranging nature of Iran’s malign activities, including violent and destabilizing behavior toward the United States, its allies, and the Iranian people themselves.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently announced the creation of a special group of foreign affairs professionals at the State Department, called the Iran Action Group, to implement and coordinate a comprehensive approach.
In announcing the IAG, as it is called, Secretary Pompeo noted that since the United States withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal, which failed to restrain Iran’s nuclear progress or its campaigns of violence, President Donald Trump “has instituted a campaign of pressure, deterrence and solidarity with the long-suffering Iranian people.”
“Our hope is that one day soon we can reach a new agreement with Iran. But we must see major changes in the regime’s behavior both inside and outside of its borders. The Iranian people and the world are demanding that Iran finally act like a normal nation.”
Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook will lead the Iran Action Group. He told reporters that the team will continue to work with allies and other nations around the world to build “the broadest level of international support” for the approach the U.S. is taking, building on areas of agreement, and working to find consensus on areas of disagreement.
“Because when you look at the range of Iranian threats, especially around missiles and cyber, maritime aggression, terrorism, these are concerns of other nations. The United States is not alone in that regard.”
Special Representative Hook noted that “if the Iranian regime demonstrates changes in its behavior, then the President is prepared to engage in dialogue in order to find solutions. But,” he said, “the sanctions relief, the reestablishment of full diplomatic and commercial relations with the United States, and economic cooperation with the United States, can only begin after we see that the Iranian regime is serious about changing its behavior.”