Bolton says Biden approach to Iran encouraging threats to US officials

Former national security adviser John Bolton

© APA | Former national security adviser John Bolton

# 11 August 2022 10:27 (UTC +04:00)

Former national security adviser John Bolton on Wednesday slammed the Biden administration for negotiating with Iran on a new nuclear deal after it was revealed he was targeted in an Iranian assassination attempt, saying attempts to “appease” Tehran is encouraging threats against the U.S. officials, APA reports citing The Hill.

Bolton told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on the “Situation Room” that because the nature of the Iranian regime “drives it to this kind of action,” President Biden should not be trying to revive a 2015 deal that limited Iran’s nuclear abilities in exchange for easing U.S. sanctions against the Middle Eastern nation.

“It’s a big mistake for the administration to continue to show weakness to Iran by begging to get back in the 2015 nuclear deal,” said Bolton, who has long been hawkish on Iran. “It encourages Tehran to engage in just these kinds of terrorist activities.”

The Justice Department on Wednesday charged an Iranian nationalist and member of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) with planning to hire someone to kill Bolton.

The Justice Department said Shahram Poursafi began plotting the attack in October, likely retaliating against Bolton for a January 2020 U.S. drone strike that killed Qassem Soleimani, the leader of the IRGC’s elite Quds Force.

Poursafi was planning to pay up to $300,000 for someone to kill Bolton in Maryland or Washington, D.C., according to the Justice Department, and was in contact with a U.S. resident whom he asked to kill Bolton. The resident is listed as a confidential source in department documents.

The Biden administration has engaged in indirect negotiations with Tehran for months to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which former President Trump scrapped in 2018.