WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) – ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs – released the following statement on the Trump Administration’s decision to withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran Nuclear Agreement, an international agreement to prevent Iran from ever developing or acquiring a nuclear weapon. The President announced he was reimposing sanctions on Iran and countries which deal with Iran, a step which withdraws the US from the agreement.
“Everyone agrees we must prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, and the President has only made it harder to hold Iran accountable,” Brown said. “By walking away from the most intrusive inspections program in history, the President could be giving Iran an excuse to restart nuclear activities that even his own advisers agree have been halted under this agreement. The President needs to present the American people and our allies with a realistic strategy to ensure Iran does not restart its prohibited nuclear activities, and he did not do so this afternoon.”
US intelligence officials and monitors from the International Atomic Energy Agency have made clear the agreement is working and Iran is complying. Brown played a key role in crafting Congressional sanctions on Iran, including those enacted in August 2017. While the Iran agreement provided relief from key nuclear-related sanctions, it did not prevent the United States or its allies from maintaining sanctions on Iran’s other harmful and destabilizing activities in the region, including its support for terrorism, its ballistic missile program, and human rights abuses. Brown is also concerned that withdrawing from the JCPOA will damage U.S. credibility, including in upcoming North Korea nuclear negotiations, and risks sparking a dangerous nuclear arms race in the Middle East.