President Trump on Tuesday announced the U.S. will withdraw from the international Iran nuclear deal and will reinstate economic sanctions against Tehran. The deal, which Iran and a group of six other countries signed in 2015, was intended to limit Iran's nuclear capability for more than a decade in return for lifting international sanctions.
60 Minutes spent eight days in Tehran in 2014 as the countries were negotiating ahead of the deal. Correspondent Steve Kroft spoke with everyday Iranians about their perspectives on the negotiations, their country, and relations with the United States.
"Iran is one of the wealthiest, best educated, most sophisticated countries in the Middle East, and most people here are eager to end their political and economic isolation if their government can work out a deal," Kroft reported.
Kroft said no one he spoke with in Tehran believed their country wanted to build a nuclear bomb, and most people directed him to language indicating this on the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei's website. But skeptics included Israel, Saudi Arabia, and some members of Congress.
"The White House has said there is only a 50/50 chance that the negotiations will succeed," Kroft reported at the time. "But whatever happens this will be remembered as a moment of opportunity — lost or seized — the first one in a long time, and most people in Tehran seem ready to take the chance."
Kroftand interviewed Iranian President Hassan Rouhani about the nuclear deal. Rouhani told him it was "a very difficult agreement to reach with lots of ups and downs. But it's the right path we have chosen. I am happy that we have taken extremely important steps on this issue and are in the process of taking the final steps."