Sputnik News– Washington’s commitment to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal has been thrown into question again, after the imposition of new US sanctions on Iranian companies, and an op-ed by Mike Pence. Sputnik spoke with Middle East political analyst Catherine Shakdam about how likely it is that Trump might abandon the deal, and what the ramifications could look like.
Sputnik: So, is the administration likely to exit the deal, or is this just bluster on the part of the president, and if so, what could the consequences for the international community look like?
Catherine Shakdam: I think it is very likely, if you look at the language coming out of Washington lately and the constant criticism that President Trump has levelled against Iran, its system of governance and the way that everything is being conducted there – including its foreign policies – I think that it is extremely likely that he will abandon the deal.
The consequences I think would be dire in the sense that we tend to forget that this nuclear deal with Iran is not Washington-made, it involves other parties and other Western capitals, which include the UK, Paris, and of course Russia and China. So, he cannot just dismiss an entire international agreement on the basis that Washington has an issue with it or in particular Mr Trump. So I think it’s going to be very difficult for the US to position itself within the international community and still continue to renege on the deals that have been brokered with other parties and then dismissing them off the bat without a care in the world. I think it could isolate Washington, because legally it’s going to put its partners in a difficult position when it comes to their relationship with Iran. But again, I don’t think Mr Trump cares very much.
Sputnik: Over the past week we have of course seen unrest in Iran in the form of pretty widespread protests. Some have said that it’s likely President Trump will seize upon this as an opportunity to rally against the Iranian government and pull out of the nuclear deal, is that at all likely?
Catherine Shakdam: Absolutely. First of all I think there’s been a very hypocritical way of looking at these protests in Iran, and I’m not saying that everything is rosy in the Islamic Republic, but that being said you cannot just suddenly use certain protests and the violence we’ve seen by certain demonstrators, basically breaking the law in Iran, and use this as a way to somehow level accusations of human rights abuses. Every country has a certain set of laws and demonstrations need to be done within in a certain way. We saw, for example, in the US with the Occupy Wall Street movement where crackdown was actually quite severe and some people argued there were human rights violations there. So, I think it’s very hypocritical for Donald Trump to level any formal accusation against Iran and to use this as a political scoring point board to try to justify his position toward Iran.
The views and opinions expressed by Catherine Shakdam are those of the analyst and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.