President Donald Trump has made clear that the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism cannot acquire a nuclear weapon:
“As long as I'm President of the United States, Iran will never be allowed to have a nuclear weapon.”
For the past two years, the United States has waged a maximum pressure campaign using economic and diplomatic tools to prevent the Iranian regime from expanding its nuclear activities. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently announced new steps in that direction.
First, the United States has announced that the sanctions waiver for three Iran nuclear–related projects will terminate following a 60-day period to allow entities to wind down any involvement they might have in these projects.
This relates to the Arak reactor conversion, the provision of enriched uranium for the Tehran research reactor, and the export of Iran’s spent and scrap research reactor fuel.
The waiver allowed projects started under the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, in which the United States ceased participating in 2018, to continue without U.S. sanctions risk.
Second, the United States imposed sanctions on two Iranian officials involved in Iran’s nuclear enrichment activities: Amjad Sazgar and Majid Agha’i.
Third, the United States sanctioned the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines, the IRISL, under Executive Order 13382.
Secretary Pompeo said in a statement, “IRISL has repeatedly transported items related to Iran’s ballistic missile and military programs and is also a longstanding carrier of other proliferation-sensitive items, including Nuclear Suppliers Group-controlled items.”Those who do business with IRISL risk sanctions.
U.S. Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook said the United States is taking these actions now “because the regime continues to use its nuclear program to extort the international community. We will deny Iran all paths to a nuclear weapon.”