September 2022International NewsEuropeMiddle EastConflict and Security

U.S. Allies Doubt Iran Nuclear Deal Revival is Imminent

Katherine Dorrer
Staff Writer

With the latest effort to revive the Iranian nuclear deal, U.S. allies have stated that they have “serious doubts” that Iran and the U.S. will strike a deal, reports Reuters. President Biden promised to restore the nuclear agreement during his 2020 presidential campaign, yet negotiations appear to be delayed ahead of the 2022 midterm elections. Withdrawing from the deal in 2018, former President Donald Trump claimed that “this was a horrible one-sided deal that should have never, ever been made.” 

The nuclear deal, between Iran, the five permanent UN Security Council members and Germany, aimed to curb Tehran’s ability to produce nuclear weapons and material supply in exchange for the removal of strict economic sanctions imposed by the U.S., E.U., and UN on Iran. Since the abandonment of the deal during the Trump Administration, Tehran has violated the terms of the deal by enriching uranium to 60 percent and not allowing for the International Atomic Energy Agency to do their inspections, explains AP, increasing tensions as the nation grows closer to weapons-grade levels. The EU is trying to find a compromise, but producing a pact soon seems unlikely.

The three European powers, France, Britain, and Germany have raised concerns over Iran’s reliability in the agreement as uranium particles were found at three undeclared sites by the IAEA. As Iran has yet to clarify why traces of nuclear matter were found, the nation is demanding the IAEA to terminate its investigations into its nuclear activity. The European countries said in a joint statement that they doubt Iran’s commitment to a legitimate deal reports Reuters. 

For more than a month, Washington and Tehran have been exchanging comments regarding the revival of the deal. A State Department representative stated that the U.S. is ready to “quickly conclude a deal,” along with EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borell who stated on Twitter that “what can be negotiated has been negotiated, and it’s now in a final text.” Amidst indirect conversations and negotiations, the U.S. is offering to lift all sanctions imposed in exchange for the restoration of nuclear program constraints and commitments under the 2015 pact. 

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian discussed with Al Jazeera that the deal may be reached only if  “all forms of sanctions stipulated in the nuclear agreement were lifted.” If an agreement were to be made, Iran’s economy would benefit from the expansion of oil exports and other materials, along with having access to foreign exchange reserves and the global financial system for trade.

Supporters of the deal have urged Iran and the U.S. to come to an agreement because, without one, Tehran’s developments will become difficult to reverse. French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna explained how the world needs “to avoid a nuclear catastrophe,” and advises Iran to accept the deal alluding to the aggressive Ukraine-Russia and China-Taiwan conflicts, reports the Associated Press

Efforts to revive the nuclear pact have continued to reach a stalemate as the United Nations General Assembly’s 77th Session on September 20 commenced. President Ebrahim Raisi of Iran made his first appearance addressing the United Nations, reiterating that his government is serious about the deal while raising concerns over trust in the U.S commitment to the deal and seeking stronger assurance that the deal will not be abandoned. President Biden has said that although he can guarantee current U.S. compliance, he cannot promise future administration assurances, reports The Guardian. The deal has yet to come to a conclusion after months of debate between Iran and the United States and as satisfactory exchanges continue to fall short, the likelihood of a restored JCPOA looks bleak.   

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