The PJ Tatler

Ayatollah: No Deal Without 'Removal, Not Suspension, of Sanctions'

In remarks to Iranian clerics and tweeted on his official account Thursday, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said there will be no deal if sanctions are only suspended.

Khamenei said he was acting off recent comments by U.S. officials, but he may have been referring to the administration’s assertion that sanctions will “snap back” if Iran violates the deal — something critics like Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) have said is not realistically possible.

“Iran is in a — you know — much tighter box, if you will, because they have to live up to the international agreement with the threat that all the sanctions will snap back if they don’t, and they will snap back automatically,” Secretary of State John Kerry told Reuters in August.

“…They don’t get a dime of relief from the sanctions until they have built a two-month breakout time for one year, for 10 years. Then it starts to go down a bit, but we did it on a slope, where you go up to about 15, they will have very little if none — they’ll have almost no research on their advanced centrifuges for the first 10 years, then they get some research, but they’ve got a long way to go before they have viable centrifuges for a major program.”

Khamenei also chimed in on sanctions during the negotiating process, insisting there would be no deal unless all sanctions are repealed immediately.

Iran’s parliament has yet to weigh in on the deal. That’s expected in about a month, after the UN General Assembly.

The supreme leader has final say over all matters in the Islamic Republic, but publicly insists he’s not telling lawmakers to vote one way or the other.