US President Donald Trump last night refused to formally certify that Iran was complying with a nuclear deal signed in 2015, but key US allies defended the pact.
The deal, which was signed by Britain, China, France, Russia, Germany and the European Union, must be re-certified by the US every 90 days, but Trump defied his top advisers by threatening to end the agreement.
The US congress now has 60 days to decide whether to impose economic sanctions on Tehran that were lifted under the pact.
Today, I announced our strategy to confront the Iranian regime’s hostile actions and to ensure that they never acquire a nuclear weapon. pic.twitter.com/N4ISdjuEdC— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 13, 2017
Here's how world leaders reacted.
Britain, Germany and France
In a rare move, Prime Minister Theresa May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron issued a joint statement confirming their commitment to the plan "and its full implementation by all sides".
"Preserving the [Iran nuclear deal] is in our shared national security interest," the statement said.
Foreign secretary Boris Johnson added that the deal was still alive and the UK will work with its friends and partners to make sure any new measures do not disrupt or invalidate the deal.
UK committed to Iran nuclear deal. Will be engaging with US, European, & Iranian counterparts to preserve the deal. pic.twitter.com/5cQBWXrWJo— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) October 13, 2017
Germany's foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel added today that terminating the Iran nuclear deal or reimposing sanctions could result in Iran developing nuclear weapons and raise the "danger of war relatively close to Europe".
He also said he feared it would not remain an "Iran issue", but that others in the world would consider acquiring nuclear weapons.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hit back at Trump and said it was committed to the deal.
“The Iranian nation has not and will never bow to any foreign pressure.
“Iran and the deal are stronger than ever.”
In Brussels, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said the deal was an international agreement and that the US could not cancel it on its own.
We cannot afford as the international community... to dismantle a nuclear agreement that is working and delivering, especially now.
This deal is not a bilateral agreement, it does not belong to any single country and it is not up to any single country to terminate it.
The International Atomic Energy Agency
Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency - the UN atomic watchdog - said Iran was under the world’s “most robust nuclear verification regime” and that Tehran is complying with the deal.
“The nuclear-related commitments undertaken by Iran under the [Iran nuclear deal] are being implemented,” Amano said.
Israel and Saudi Arabia
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated Trump, saying he had created an "opportunity to fix this bad deal", while Saudi Arabia applauded his "firm strategy".