PRAGUE -- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said he believes the next U.S. administration will accept the landmark nuclear deal signed by Tehran and world powers, despite U.S. President-elect Donald Trump pledging to "tear up" the agreement.
An array of international sanctions targeting Iran were lifted earlier this year following the deal, which curbs the country’s controversial nuclear program.
Zarif, speaking in the Czech capital on November 11, said that he expects Trump to support the deal "once the dust has settled and people are briefed about the realities of the region and the world."
“It will be in the interest of everybody to remain committed in practice to the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action),” said Zarif, referring to the official name of the nuclear deal. “But if there are doubts about the implementation, then Iran will have its own options as well."
During the election campaign, Trump called the deal "disastrous" and said it would be his "No. 1 priority" to dismantle it.
U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner and other U.S. experts said on November 10 that the deal is not legally binding and that Trump could not only refuse to abide by the deal but could reverse President Barack Obama's executive orders carrying out the U.S. side of the deal by easing economic sanctions on Iran.
Their assessment contradicted Iranian President Hassan Rohani's assertion on November 9 that there is "no possibility" Trump could dismantle the deal because it was approved by multiple nations on the UN Security Council.