Iran's president has warned the US that his country could relaunch its nuclear programme "within hours" if Washington decides to impose new sanctions.

As the Trump administration faces mounting pressure in its response to the nuclear threat posed by North Korea, President Hassan Rouhani threatened to restart Iran's nuclear programme.

Iran curbed its nuclear activities in 2015 as part of a deal orchestrated by President Donald Trump's predecessor Barack Obama. The deal led to most international sanctions against Iran being lifted.

Trump has repeatedly threatened to pull out of the nuclear deal, one of the keystones of Obama's foreign policy. After Iran launched a missile test in January, the Trump administration warned that it would no longer turn "a blind eye to Iran's hostile and belligerent actions."

Earlier this month, the Trump administration imposed new sanctions against six Iran-based satellite companies after the State Department warned that an Iranian rocket launch breached a UN security council resolution.

The resolution called on Iran not to "undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology."

On Tuesday (15 August), Rouhani told the Iranian parliament that the country "could quit the nuclear deal within hours if the US imposes more sanctions."

"In an hour and a day, Iran could return to a more advanced (nuclear) level than at the beginning of the negotiations," he warned, without providing any further details.

"The U.S. has shown that it is neither a good partner nor a trustable negotiator," Rouhani said, according to an Associated Press report. "Those who are trying to go back to the language of threats and sanctions are prisoners of their past hallucinations. They deprive themselves of the advantages of peace."

He added that Iran sought to remain loyal to its commitments under the nuclear deal.

"The deal was a model of the victory of peace and diplomacy over war and unilateralism," he said. "It was Iran's preference, but it was not and will not remain Iran's only option."