Issue Brief on “US Withdrawal from JCPOA: A Provocative Standoff in Transatlantic Relations”


On May 8, 2018, US President Donald Trump announced his unilateral decision to cease the United States’ participation in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) regarding the Iranian nuclear program. It decided to begin re-imposing US nuclear-related sanctions on Iran that were lifted to effectuate the JCPOA sanctions relief, following a wind-down period.

In a show of defiance to the US decision, the European Commission’s President, Jean-Claude Juncker responded by saying that: “In Sofia, we saw a show of European unity. As long as the Iranians respect their commitments, the EU will of course stick to the agreement of which it was an architect – an agreement that was unanimously ratified by the United Nations Security Council and which is essential for preserving peace in the region and the world.”[1]

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