The JCPOA Withdrawal

International & National Security Law Practice Group Teleforum

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In 2015, the United States, along with China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the European Union, reached a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran. The terms of the deal called for Iran to take various steps to ensure its nuclear capacity would be exclusively peaceful. Aspects of Iran’s nuclear development program were subject to restrictions for varying lengths of time between 10 and 15 years. In exchange for Iran agreeing to these terms, Iran received relief from U.S., EU, and UN nuclear-related sanctions. Supporters of the JCPOA argued this pushed Iran from the brink of possessing a nuclear weapon and it opened the door for engaging Iran in a more constructive way than in the past. Critics of the deal, including President Trump, contended the time limits were insufficient and the deal failed to address issues such as Iran’s ballistic missile program, its sponsorship of terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah, and its malign influence in the Middle East. In May 2018, President Trump withdrew the United States from the JCPOA. Our experts will discuss the consequences of this decision as it relates to the role of the U.S. in international agreements and treaties, the impact of the sanctions regime, and what we can expect going forward.


David S. Cohen, Partner, WilmerHale

Lester Munson, Principal, Government Affairs, BGR Group

Moderator: Matthew Heiman, Visiting Fellow, National Security Institute, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University


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