Obama calls critics of Iran nuclear deal 'overheated and dishonest'

"There's a reason this deal took so long to negotiate," the president said from the Oval Office. "Because we refused to accept a bad deal."

By REUTERS
July 18, 2015 16:52
1 minute read.

US President Barack Obama slams critics of Iran deal

US President Barack Obama slams critics of Iran deal

US President Barack Obama on Saturday defended the historic nuclear deal made with Iran last week and warned that some critics of the agreement will offer the American people "dishonest arguments" against the accord in the weeks ahead.

"There's a reason this deal took so long to negotiate. Because we refused to accept a bad deal. We held out for a deal that met every one of our bottom lines. And we got it," Obama said during his weekly address to the American people.

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"This deal will make America and the world safer and more secure. Still, you're going to hear a lot of overheated and often dishonest arguments about it in the weeks ahead," he said.

Obama has run into a storm of accusations from Republican lawmakers and Israel that he gave away too much to Tehran and is seeking to sell the Iran nuclear deal to skeptical US lawmakers and nervous allies, insisting the landmark agreement was the only alternative to a nuclear arms race and more war in the Middle East.

"Does this deal resolve all of the threats Iran poses to its neighbors and the world? No. Does it do more than anyone has done before to make sure Iran does not obtain a nuclear weapon? Yes. And that was our top priority from the start," Obama continued.

Obama has vowed to veto any effort to block the deal and although he faces a tough challenge in the Republican-controlled Congress, he is expected to prevail.

The agreement is a triumph for Obama, who has made outreach to America's enemies a hallmark of his presidency, but it is also seen as his biggest foreign policy gamble since taking office in 2009.


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