US President Donald Trump has reportedly assigned Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) as a liaison to Iran in a stated effort to de-escalate tensions with Tehran.
Trump signed off the proposal this weekend, four US officials told Politico on Wednesday.
The report was released a day after Trump and his state secretary, Mike Pompeo, spoke of “progress” and “deal” with Iran.
According to Politico, assignment of the “dovish” Kentucky Republican could hamper the administration’s so-called “maximum pressure” campaign.
On Saturday, Rand Paul played a round of golf with president Donald Trump at his club in Sterling, Virginia, along with Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.).
Neither the White House nor Paul’s office has commented about US media questions on a meeting between Paul and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who is currently in New York.
Rand Paul, the anti-war senator warned Mike Pompeo during an April hearing on Capitol Hill about going to war with Iran through bypassing congressional approval.
“You do not have the permission of Congress to go to war with Iran,” Rand Paul told Mike Pompeo. “Only Congress can declare war.”
The report came on the foothills of restrictions imposed on Zarif during his New York visit.
Tehran has said that the restrictions imposed on Zarif, travelling between the United Nations and the Iranian UN mission or the Iranian UN ambassador’s residence, would not affect his “work schedule.”
The US is obliged to allow access to the United Nations, based on a 1947 agreement, involving UN headquarters.