Former Clinton Adviser Supports New Iran Sanctions

• February 3, 2017 2:15 pm


Hillary Clinton's former chief foreign policy adviser, Jake Sullivan, told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on Thursday that he supports the Trump administration imposing new sanctions on Iran.

Blitzer asked Sullivan whether he supports new sanctions after reports surfaced Thursday that the administration would move to punish the Islamic Republic after Tehran tested a medium-range ballistic missile on Sunday.

"I do, and in fact, when the Iranians tested ballistic missiles in the Obama administration, the Obama administration imposed sanctions," Sullivan said. "This is consistent with steps that have been taken in the past."

"Is it a violation, these ballistic missile tests, by Iran and the Iran nuclear deal, which you were involved in?" Blitzer asked.

Sullivan said that the test is not a direct violation of the deal itself, but he did say it is a violation of international law from the U.S government's perspective.

"Explain why it's a violation of international law, because the Iranians say these are just defensive ballistic missile tests, not a big deal," Blitzer said.

"The United Nations Security Council continues to prohibit Iran from taking these kinds of steps, testing ballistic missiles, and while it's not technically part of the nuclear deal, it is part of the United Nations Security Council resolution [that enshrines the deal as international law], so if they violate those resolutions, there should be consequences," Sullivan said.

The Trump administration hit Iran on Friday morning with new sanctions targeting three networks comprising 13 people and a dozen entities, including a group linked to Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps that works with Lebanese Hezbollah, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization.

"Iran has a choice to make. We are going to continue to respond to their behavior in an ongoing way at an appropriate level to continue to pressure them to change their behavior," a senior administration official told NBC News.