Fresh off of yesterday’s report that the US was planning to impose a new round of sanctions against Iran over its ballistic missile developments, the White House has apparently decided to delay the matter, with administration officials now saying there is no timeline for when they will actually impose the sanctions.
Officials reiterated their belief that the sanctions are legal, despite objections from several other P5+1 nations, notably Russia and China, that they were not in the spirit of the recently signed nuclear deal. Iran has argued that the sanctions are a direct violation of the deal, since the US is basing the argument around a UN Security Council resolution on nuclear-capable missiles.
The sanctions would almost certainly have put US businesses in an even worse state as the rest of the world scrambles to open up business with Iran, though officials did not indicate if this was a factor in the decision to back off the sanctions in the near-term.
Republican leaders are angrily condemning the delay, with Rep. Mike Pompeo (R – KS) saying it would be taken as another sign of “a level of fecklessness that even the president hasn’t shown before.” These same Republican leaders, of course, objected to the nuclear deal in the first place, and are eager to keep the sanctions against Iran in place, irrespective of the pretext.