Extending U.S. sanctions on Iran for 10 years would breach the Iranian nuclear agreement, Iran Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said on Wednesday, warning that Tehran would retaliate if the sanctions are approved. The U.S. House of Representatives re-authorized last week the Iran Sanctions Act, or ISA, for 10 years. The law was first adopted in 1996 to punish investments in Iran’s energy industry and deter Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons. The Iran measure will expire at the end of 2016 if it is not renewed. The House bill must still be passed by the Senate and signed by President Barack Obama to become law.
The current U.S. government has breached the nuclear deal in many occasions.
Iran Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei
The U.S. lawmakers passed the bill one week after Republican Donald Trump was elected U.S. president. Republicans in Congress unanimously opposed the agreement, along with about two dozen Democrats, and Trump has also criticized it. Lawmakers from both parties said they hoped bipartisan support for a tough line against Iran would continue under the new president. President-elect Trump once said during his campaign that he would “rip up” the agreement, drawing a harsh reaction from Khamenei, who said if that happens, Iran would “set fire” to the deal.