US senator: Impossible to reverse Iran sanctions relief
A Republican US senator has said it would be “next to impossible” to snap back sanctions on Iran in case of a breach of the nuclear agreement.
“The president has said that sanctions will go back into effect if Iran violates this agreement, but let’s be clear, reversing course will be next to impossible,” Senator Shelley Moore Capito said Saturday during the GOP’s weekly address.
The West Virginia freshman said the United States was “left with a bad deal” because President Barack Obama “operated from a position of concession” during the negotiations.
Capito criticized the “partisan minority” in the US Senate that successfully blocked a resolution of disapproval against the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
“Unfortunately, a partisan minority in the Senate blocked a bipartisan majority from even taking a true up-or-down vote on whether the nuclear agreement should be approved,” she said.
“The bipartisan majority of Congress and the American public have concluded it will not improve our safety, our security, or our stability,” the senator added.
Republicans, who are in control of both houses of Congress, have failed to reject the nuclear agreement with Iran on three separate occasions this month.
On Thursday, the last day of the congressional review period, 45 senators voted against an amendment from Majority Leader Mitch McConnell which would have prevented Obama from lifting sanctions on Iran until Tehran recognizes Israel.
Sixty votes were needed to approve the measure in the 100-member Senate.
Opponents of the Vienna accord appeared to acknowledge defeat ahead of Thursday’s vote.
That means in the coming months the United States will work with other countries from the P5+1 group (Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany), Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency to prepare for the deal’s formal implementation.
US Secretary of State John Kerry has appointed a lead coordinator for implementing the nuclear agreement.
Kerry announced in a statement on Thursday that Stephen Mull, a former ambassador to Poland, will be charged with working to ensure measures laid out in the JCPOA are implemented and verified.