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National Security & Defense

Iran President Suggests Western Troops ‘Could Be in Danger’ over Threats to Nuclear Deal

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani listens during a news conference in New York, September 26, 2018. (Brendan Mcdermid/Reuters)

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that U.S. and European troops are in “danger” after Germany, France, and the United Kingdom triggered a dispute mechanism in the Obama-led Iran nuclear deal.

“Today, the American soldier is in danger, tomorrow the European soldier could be in danger,” Rouhani said in a televised cabinet meeting. “We want you to leave this region but not with war. We want you to go wisely. It is to your own benefit.”

Rouhani also angrily reiterated that Iran does not seek a nuclear weapon.

The three European powers announced their decision to invoke the conflict resolution mechanism on Monday in a joint statement, saying that had been “left with no choice, given Iran’s actions.”

Following a U.S. airstrike that killed general Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s elite Quds Force, Iran announced it was ending “its final limitations” under the nuclear deal.

The dispute mechanism allows for a disputation process that will last 15 days. If no solution is agreed upon, Iran could face reimposed sanctions from the international community.

President Trump took the U.S. out of the nuclear deal in May 2018, despite the protestations of European leaders, after calling the deal “one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.”

“It is clear to me we cannot prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb, under the decaying and rotten structure of the current agreement,” the President said at the time.

Iran first made public a major breach of the deal in July when it exceeded the allotted 3.67 percent maximum uranium enrichment, while remaining far short of the 90 percent required to construct a nuclear weapon.

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