Tillerson: Trump and I 'disagree' on Iran deal

Secretary of State acknowledges he disagrees with the President over nuclear deal between Iran and world powers.

Elad Benari ,

Rex Tillerson
Rex Tillerson

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson acknowledged on Tuesday that he and President Donald Trump disagree over the nuclear deal signed between Iran and world powers.

Speaking to reporters at a State Department briefing and quoted by Reuters, Tillerson said the two men discuss how to use the international agreement to advance administration policies.

During the presidential election campaign, Trump was highly critical of the Iran nuclear deal, saying it was “disastrous” and pledging to annul it.

After he was sworn in as president, Trump described the nuclear deal as “the worst deal I’ve ever seen negotiated” and accused the Islamic Republic of “disrespecting” the United States because of the deal.

However, he recently confirmed that the Islamic Republic is adhering to the nuclear agreement it signed with world powers in 2015, marking the second time since Trump took office that it had done so.

Trump has made clear he has preserved the deal reluctantly after being advised to do so by Tillerson.

"He and I have differences of views on things like JCPOA, and how we should use it," Tillerson said Tuesday, using the acronym for the deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Tillerson said that Washington could "tear it up and walk away" or stay in the deal and hold Iran accountable to its terms, which he said would require Iran to act as a "good neighbor."

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tillerson's remarks.

Last week, during a rally in Ohio, Trump warned Iran to adhere to the terms of the nuclear deal with world powers or "there will be big, big problems" for Tehran.