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Watch: Trump will announce plans to pull out of Iran nuclear deal despite pleas from European leaders

U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he arrives at Joint Base Andrews after attending the National Rifle Association (NRA) convention in Dallas, in Maryland, U.S., May 4, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he arrives at Joint Base Andrews after attending the National Rifle Association (NRA) convention in Dallas, in Maryland, U.S., May 4, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump will announce Tuesday that he is withdrawing from the international nuclear deal with Iran and reimposing U.S. sanctions against Tehran, according to people familiar with the matter.

Trump’s decision, to be announced at the White House at 2 p.m., follows the failure of last-ditch efforts by Britain, France and Germany to convince him that his concerns about “flaws” in the accord could be addressed without violating its terms or ending it altogether.

The U.S. president, who has called the agreement weak and poorly negotiated, will announce that he will no longer withhold U.S. sanctions related to Iran’s nuclear program that were set aside under the 2015 deal, effectively taking the United States out of the agreement among Iran and six world powers.

Vice President Mike Pence briefed members of Congress about the decision Tuesday, and Trump spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron, who has served as an emissary for European allies that want the United States to remain in the agreement.

It was not immediately clear wether Trump will announce the immediate reinstatement of all sanctions or just a large and significant set of banking-related penalties that are due for review by Saturday. Another set is due for review in July, and Macron had hoped to use this period to continue efforts to negotiate a U.S.-European agreement.

A decision to immediately reinstate all nuclear-related sanctions would be the most extreme step Trump could take now. People familiar with the decision said Trump remains open to the possibility of a supplemental agreement to “fix” the deal, but prospects for that approach appeared dim.

The three European allies have vowed to remain in the agreement and while the deal itself contains no provisions for withdrawal, Iran has threatened to reactivate its nuclear program if the United States reneges on any of its obligations under the pact’s terms.

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The New York Times reported Tuesday that Trump had decided to reinstate all nuclear-related sanctions.

Trump, who criticized the Iran deal throughout his presidential campaign, said in January that the United States would “withdraw” unless the agreement was rewritten to address his concerns.

The Washington Post’s Josh Dawsey, Philip Rucker and John Hudson contributed to this report.

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