Boris Johnson calls for ‘Trump deal’ to replace Iran nuclear agreement

Boris Johnson has called for a new “Trump deal” to replace the Iran nuclear agreement, winning praise from the US president and potentially shattering EU unity.

In extraordinary comments in New York, the prime minister attacked the existing “bad deal” – ending four years of the UK backing it as the best way to stop Tehran building a bomb.

And he went further, telling US television: “I think there’s one guy who can do a better deal, and one guy who understands how to get a difficult partner like Iran over the line, and that is the president of the United States.

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“So I hope that there will be a Trump deal, to be totally honest with you.”

The comments delighted the US president, who lauded Mr Johnson by saying: “That’s why he’s a winner. That’s why he’s a man who’s going to be successful in the UK.

“Boris is a man, who…number one, he’s a friend of mine, number two, he’s very smart, very tough.”

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Anti Brexit protesters march on Whitehall

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Many of the protesters carried placards

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A demonstrator wears a Boris Johnson mask during a London rally

AFP/Getty Images

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An anti-Brexit demonstrator wields an EU flag during a London rally.

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The protesters also marched to Trafalgar Square, where they blocked traffic

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John McDonnell addressed crowds in Whitehall.

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A small group of Brexit supporters attempted to stage a counter protest in central London.

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Three people were arrested in London, including a woman who sat on the road near Trafalgar Square.

AP

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In Oxford, locals and students gathered outside Balliol College, Boris Johnson’s alma mater, to protest.

PA

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Thousands of people gather in central Glasgow to protest against the prime minister.

AFP/Getty Images

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Jeremy Corbyn spoke to protesters in central Glasgow.

Getty

1/11

Anti Brexit protesters march on Whitehall

EPA

2/11

Many of the protesters carried placards

AP

3/11

A demonstrator wears a Boris Johnson mask during a London rally

AFP/Getty Images

4/11

An anti-Brexit demonstrator wields an EU flag during a London rally.

AFP/Getty Images

5/11

The protesters also marched to Trafalgar Square, where they blocked traffic

AP

6/11

John McDonnell addressed crowds in Whitehall.

PA

7/11

A small group of Brexit supporters attempted to stage a counter protest in central London.

AP

8/11

Three people were arrested in London, including a woman who sat on the road near Trafalgar Square.

AP

9/11

In Oxford, locals and students gathered outside Balliol College, Boris Johnson’s alma mater, to protest.

PA

10/11

Thousands of people gather in central Glasgow to protest against the prime minister.

AFP/Getty Images

11/11

Jeremy Corbyn spoke to protesters in central Glasgow.

Getty

Insisting the existing deal was “ready to expire”, Mr Trump added: “I respect Boris a lot and I’m not at all surprised that he was the first one to come out and say that.”

Mr Johnson’s interview, with NBC television, came a day after he blamed Iran for the missile strike on Saudi Arabia’s oil industry and hinted at sending military help to Riyadh

There was “a very high degree of probability” that Tehran was behind the devastating attack that shut down half of Saudi oil production and raised the risk of war, the prime minister told reporters.

At the United Nations, Emmanuel Macron sought to defuse tensions between Washington and Tehran and to bring the two sides together.

The French president said any new framework must focus on keeping a system in place to monitor Iran’s nuclear programme, as well as on its post-2025 nuclear activities and regional influence.

“France is trying to put together proposals to avoid an escalation,” Mr Macron said. “We need with our allies, regional actors and Iran to sit round the table.”

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On NBC, Mr Johnson said, of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), agreed by all the major powers in 2015: “The reality is, as President Trump rightly said, it was a bad deal.

“It had many defects. Iran was and is behaving disruptively in the region,” he claimed – before adding “let’s do a better deal”.

Mr Trump echoed the prime minister, telling reporters: “The other deal was ready to expire, it was a very short number of years left. All that money paid and wasted. We didn’t have the right to inspect the appropriate sites.”

The US unilaterally withdrew from the agreement in 2018 and reimposed harsh sanctions that have badly hurt the Iranian economy.

In July, Iran responded by announcing it would breach a limit on uranium enrichment, blaming European countries for failing to live up to their own commitments.

Later, a government spokesman insisted Mr Johnson still supported the JCPOA, but said “solutions” were needed to bring Iran back into compliance.

In a joint statement with the UK, after talks between their leaders, France and Germany agreed Iran was responsible for the Saudi attack, but stressed its “continued commitment to the JCPOA”.


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