Trump reportedly mulling non-nuclear sanctions on Iran

Trump’s transition team reportedly examining options for imposing sanctions on Iran that would not technically breach the nuclear deal.

Ben Ariel ,

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team is reportedly examining options for imposing sanctions on Iran unrelated to its nuclear weapons program.

The Financial Times reported Friday that Trump’s team was talking with Republican lawmakers about economic penalties that would not technically breach President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran.

“They are already looking closely at their options — and that includes non-nuclear sanctions,” one congressional official who had been in contact with Trump’s transition staff told the newspaper.

Possible measures, according to the report, include targeting Iran’s ballistic missiles program or its human rights record.

Sources in Congress told the Times that such avenues would allow Trump to pressure Iran on issues like its support for terrorism or its repressive government policies.

The Senate last week unanimously voted to extend the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) by ten years.

The bill was passed by a vote of 99-0. It had previously been approved by a vote of 419-1 in the House of Representatives.

The ISA, which was first passed in 1996, enacts sanctions on companies that invest in Iran's energy sector in order to deter the Islamic Republic's pursuit of nuclear weapons.

Senior Iranian officials reacted angrily after the House of Representatives passed the extension of the sanctions, saying that doing so goes against the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the nuclear agreement signed last year between Iran and six world powers.

“If you extend the sanctions, this will mean kicking the JCPOA away and we will confront it through implementing powerful technical packages,” said the Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani.

He did not elaborate on what he meant by those comments.