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Defense Secretary Mattis says nuclear deal in U.S. best interest

Staff Writer |
Iran must show greater transparency over its suspect nuclear programs, Defense Secretary James Mattis told a congressional hearing.

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He added that it may be in the national interest to stay with the nuclear deal if the U.S. can verify that it is curbing Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

Mattis took a markedly more nuanced view in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on a deal that President Trump has roundly criticized and broadly hinted that he was ready to scrap.

Testifying alongside Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Mattis was pressed by Senator Angus S. King Jr. on whether retaining the Obama-era deal with Iran over its nuclear program would be good for national security.

After a long pause, a seemingly reluctant Mr. Mattis replied, “Yes, Senator, I do.”

The former four-star general went on to say that the deal would be in America’s best interest as long as Tehran abides by its terms.

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