Secretary of State Pompeo defends waivers to Iran sanctions

Secretary of State Pompeo defends waivers to Iran sanctions
COMBO - This combination of two pictures shows U.S. President Donald Trump, left, on July 22, 2018, and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Feb. 6, 2018. The Trump administration is announcing the reimposition of all U.S. sanctions on Iran that had been lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal. The Trump administration is announcing the reimposition of all U.S. sanctions on Iran that had been lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal. (AP Photo)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is defending the Trump administration’s reimposition of sanctions against Iran from conservative critics who argue more should be done to isolate the country.

In an interview with “Fox News Sunday,” Pompeo isn’t saying which countries received waivers from U.S. sanctions to continue importing Iranian oil. He says the eight unidentified nations “need a little bit more time to get to zero.”

Pompeo maintains that despite the waivers, “these sanctions have already had an enormous impact.”

President Donald Trump removed the U.S. from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal earlier this year. The sanctions are being imposed Monday.

Pompeo says Trump’s policy of “maximum pressure will be fully in place as of tomorrow.”