Secretary of State Mike Pompeo slammed the Iran nuclear deal on Monday, describing a new course of action for the United States.
Pompeo spoke at the Heritage Foundation about Iran's nuclear program following President Donald Trump's decision to pull the United States out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the 2015 nuclear deal the Obama administration negotiated with China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, Germany, the European Union, and Iran.
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Pompeo said the U.S. would be imposing new sanctions on Iran and they would be the toughest yet, noting Iran's Revolutionary Guard became wealthy when the deal was put in place and sanctions were eased.
"We'll continue to work with allies to counter the regime's destabilizing activities in the region, block their financing of terror, and address Iran's proliferation of missiles and other advanced weapons systems that threaten peace and stability," Pompeo said. "We'll also ensure Iran has no path to a nuclear weapon–not now, not ever."
Pompeo said the new strategy will be multi-pronged but increased sanctions will play the lead role.
"First, we will apply unprecedented financial pressure on the Iranian regime. The leaders in Tehran will have no doubt about our seriousness," Pompeo said. "Thanks to our colleagues at the Department of Treasury, sanctions are going back in full effect and new ones are coming."
"The Iranian regime should know that this is just the beginning," Pompeo said. "The sting of sanctions will be painful if the regime does not change its course from the unacceptable and unproductive path it has chosen to one that rejoins the league of nations. These will indeed end up being the strongest sanctions in history when we are complete."
Pompeo made a commitment to protect the Iranian people who are oppressed by the regime. He said he would work with the Department of Defense to counter the Iranian regime in cyberspace, at sea, and when it comes to intelligence.
Trump annoucened on May 8 that the U.S. was withdrawing from the deal, which he said was "defective at its core."
"The Iran deal is defective at its core," Trump said. "If we do nothing, we know exactly what will happen: in just a short period of time, the world's leading state sponsor of terror will be on the cusp of acquiring the world's most dangerous weapons."