Trump casts doubt over Iran nuclear deal after missile test

President Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a rally for Senator Luther Strange at the Von Braun Centre in Huntsville, Alabama, U.S. on Friday. (REUTERS)
Updated 24 September 2017
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Trump casts doubt over Iran nuclear deal after missile test

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump gave a stark warning Saturday that cast growing uncertainty over whether a nuclear deal clinched with Iran would survive after the Islamic republic tested a new medium-range missile.
State television carried footage of the launch of the Khoramshahr missile, which was first displayed at a high-profile military parade in Tehran on Friday.
It also carried in-flight video from the nose cone of the missile, which has a range of 2,000 kilometers (1,250 miles) and can carry multiple warheads.
“Iran just test-fired a Ballistic Missile capable of reaching Israel.They are also working with North Korea. Not much of an agreement we have!” Trump tweeted.
The test comes at the end of a heated week of diplomacy at the UN General Assembly in New York, where US President Donald Trump again accused Iran of destabilizing the Middle East, calling it a “rogue state whose chief exports are violence, bloodshed and chaos.”
“As long as some speak in the language of threats, the strengthening of the country’s defense capabilities will continue and Iran will not seek permission from any country for producing various kinds of missile,” Defense Minister Amir Hatami said in a statement.
Previous Iranian missile launches have triggered US sanctions and accusations that they violate the spirit of the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and major powers.
An “extremely concerned” French foreign ministry, warned the launch violated the United Nations Security Council resolution that endorsed the accord.
“France demands that Iran halt all destablizing activities in the region and to respect all provisions of Resolution 2231, including the call to halt this type of ballistic activity,” a statement read.
“France will consider ways, with its European and other partners, to get Iran to stop its destabilizing ballistic activities.”
Iran, which fought a war with neighboring Iraq in the 1980s, sees missiles as a legitimate and vital part of its defense — particularly as regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Israel import huge amounts of military hardware from the West.
Trump has threatened to bin the nuclear agreement altogether, saying Iran is developing missiles that may be used to deliver a nuclear warhead when the deal’s restrictions are lifted in 2025.
Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman denounced the test as a “provocation” aimed at the United States and its allies, including the Jewish state.


Trump is due to report to Congress on October 15 on whether Iran is still complying with the deal and whether it remains in US interests to stick by it.
If he decides that it is not, that could open the way for US lawmakers to reimpose sanctions, leading to the potential collapse of the agreement.
Trump said Wednesday he had made his decision but was not yet ready to reveal it.
The other signatories to the deal — Britain, France, Germany, China, Russia and the European Union — have all pushed for it to continue.
They point out that abandoning the agreement will remove restrictions on Iran immediately — rather than in eight years’ time — and that the International Atomic Energy Agency has repeatedly confirmed Tehran is meeting its commitments.
Iran says all of its missiles are designed to carry conventional warheads only and has limited their range to a maximum of 2,000 kilometers, although commanders say they have the technology to go further.
That makes them only medium-range but still sufficient to reach Israel or US bases in the Gulf.
“The ballistic missile which Iran fired is a provocation of the United States and its allies, including Israel,” the Israeli defense minister said.
“It is also a means to test our reactions as well as new proof of Iran’s ambition to become a world power in order to threaten the countries of the Middle East and democratic states around the world.”
In addition to carrying out missile tests, Iran has also launched a space satellite and fired missiles at Daesh group targets in eastern Syria in recent months.


“No-deal” Brexit would hit trucks, airlines and pet owners — govt papers

Updated 24 September 2018
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“No-deal” Brexit would hit trucks, airlines and pet owners — govt papers

LONDON: Leaving the European Union without a proper divorce deal could ground airlines, stop hauliers from lugging goods to the world’s biggest trading bloc and even make headaches for pet owners who want to take their dogs on holiday, according to government documents.
With just six months to go until the United Kingdom is due to leave the EU on March 29, Prime Minister Theresa May has warned that negotiations are at an impasse and that the EU must come up with new proposals on how to craft a divorce settlement.
Many business chiefs and investors fear politics could scupper an agreement, thrusting the world’s fifth largest economy into a “no-deal” Brexit that they say would spook financial markets and silt up the arteries of trade.
Britain, which has warned it could leave without a deal, published 25 technical notices on Monday covering everything from commercial road haulage and buying timber to airline regulations and taking pets abroad.
“If the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 with no agreement in place, UK and EU licensed airlines would lose the automatic right to operate air services between the UK and the EU without seeking advance permission,” the government said.
Overall, the government has published more than 65 such notices giving a glimpse of what a no-deal Brexit — the nightmare scenario for chief executives of most multinationals operating in Britain — would look like.
Amid warnings that trucks could stack up on both sides of the English Channel in the confusion of a no deal, Britain said it would seek to strike bilateral agreements with European countries to ensure hauliers would retain access.
The notices covered a vast swathe of the British economy, warning, for example, that labels on packaged food would have to be changed.
“Use of the term ‘EU’ in origin labelling would no longer be correct for food or ingredients from the UK,” the government said.
Honey producers would have to change their labels while EU countries might not accept British mineral water, the government said.
In the worse case scenario for pet owners, dogs, cats and even ferrets might need health certificates and rabies jabs. Travel plans would have to be discussed with a vet at least four months in advance before traveling to the EU.
That would mean someone wanting to take their pet to the EU on March 30, 2019, the day after Britain leaves the bloc, would have to discuss the trip with a vet before the end of November.
Without a deal, the UK would move from seamless trade with the rest of the EU to customs arrangements set by the World Trade Organization for external states with no preferential deals.
Brexiteers accept there is likely to be some short-term economic pain but say the government is trying to scare voters about the impact of a no-deal Brexit.
Britain, many Brexiteers say, will thrive in the longer term if cut loose from what they see as a doomed experiment in German-dominated unity and excessive debt-funded welfare spending.