The Iran nuclear deal must be changed if the United States is to remain in it, the top U.S. diplomat said on Tuesday, suggesting its key limits on the Iranian nuclear program must be extended.

Making his debut appearance at the annual United Nations General Assembly, U.S. President Donald Trump accused Iran of exporting "violence, bloodshed and chaos" and of seeking to project its influence in Yemen, Syria and elsewhere in a region rife with sectarian conflicts between Sunni and Shi'ite Muslims.

"We cannot let a murderous regime continue these destabilizing activities while building dangerous missiles, and we cannot abide by an agreement if it provides cover for the eventual construction of a nuclear program," Trump said.

He saved his harshest words for the 2015 pact struck by Iran and six major world powers under which Tehran agreed to restrict its nuclear program in return for loosening economic sanctions.

"The Iran deal was one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into. Frankly, that deal is an embarrassment to the United States, and I don't think you've heard the last of it - believe me," Trump said.

His chief diplomat, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, went further, telling Fox News that the agreement must be changed or the United States could not stick with it.

Tillerson said the "sunset" clauses, under which some of the deal's restrictions on Iran's nuclear program expire from 2025, were of particular concern.

"If we're going to stick with the Iran deal there has to be changes made to it. The sunset provisions simply is not a sensible way forward," he said.

Source: National News Agency

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