Iranian Foreign Minister Dr. Javad Zarif, a chief negotiator of the historic 2015 Iran nuclear accord, told CBS in an Face the Nation interview aired on Sunday that the credibility of the U.S. as a permanent member of the UN Security Council is at stake concerning its responsibility to uphold a UN resolution that it previously voted on and sponsored when the treaty was signed with Iran in 2015 that curtailed Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for sanction relief.
The 2015 nuclear accord with Iran was endorsed by the UN Security Council under a series of Joint Comprehensive Plans of Action (JCPOA) that were adopted under UN Security Council 2231 requiring Iran to phase out its IR-1 centrifuges in 10 years, among other measures.
In an October 13th press release statement, European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission Frederica Mogherini described the multilateral nuclear accord with Iran as a “robust deal that provides guarantees and a strong monitoring mechanism” so that Iran’s nuclear program is and will remain exclusively for civilian purposes only.
“There have been no violations of any of the commitments included in the agreement. The scope of the agreement relates to the nuclear program and is being fulfilled. The deal has prevented, continues and will continue Iran from developing nuclear weapons” Mogherini said.
“The U.S. domestic process…and I underline domestic following today’s announcement of President Trump is now in the hands of the U.S. Congress. The JCPOA is not a domestic issue, but a UN Security Council Resolution. The international community and the EU with it has clearly indicated that the deal is and will continue to be in place” Mogherini added.
— EU External Action (@eu_eeas) October 13, 2017
Foreign Minister Zarif said on CBS that the Trump administration is withdrawing from everything around the world and cited a disengagement mindset from the U.S. related to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), and the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
He said that under former Secretary of State John Kerry of the Obama administration the decision to cooperate with Iran produced a lot of positive results and averted some rather nasty scenarios.
“But this administration has decided to play in a totally different manner. And I can assure you that Iranian dignity and pride will not allow us to engage when mutual respect and equal footing are not respected by one party” Zarif added.
On October 13th President Trump announced his decision to impose tough sanctions on Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and decided to de-certify the 2015 Iran nuclear deal which was described as was one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.
President Trump said the U.S. got weak inspections in exchange for no more than a “purely short-term and temporary delay in Iran’s path to nuclear weapons” and wants Congress to impose tougher monitoring and compliance practices with Iran’s nuclear program and eliminate so called “sunset clauses” that removes key restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program in the future.
President Trump claimed the Iranian regime has committed multiple violations of the agreement and cited on two separate occasions, they have exceeded the limit of 130 metric tons of heavy water, failed to meet U.S. expectations in its operation of advanced centrifuges, and intimidated international inspectors into not using the full inspection authorities that the agreement calls for.
“Iranian officials and military leaders have repeatedly claimed they will not allow inspectors onto military sites, even though the international community suspects some of those sites were part of Iran’s clandestine nuclear weapons program” President Trump said.
House and Senate leaders are currently drafting new legislation that amends the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act to strengthen enforcement, prevent Iran from developing an intercontinental ballistic missile, and make all restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activity permanent under U.S. law.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) said on CBS’s Face the Nation that aired on Sunday that the 2015 Iran nuclear deal is a “terrible deal for America and the region” and is a step backwards.
Sen. Graham emphasized the need to enact stronger inspection measures on Iran and pointed out that Iran denies inspections of military bases.
“We’re going to make sure that we inspect any place. And if you don’t allow us to inspect, we’re going to re-impose sanctions” Sen. Graham said.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a critic of the 2015 nuclear accord, said during a CBS Face The Nation interview aired on Sunday that European allies should work with the U.S. to correct its deficiencies.
“They’re very clear and they have to be changed” said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Prime Minister Netanyahu claimed that if they don’t change or fix it, they don’t prevent Iran from “automatically” getting a nuclear arsenal in another decade.
Although Prime Minister Netanyahu cited the 10 year timeline for Iran getting access to a nuclear arsenal, he also said that under the terms of the current 2015 nuclear deal, in a few years’ time, Iran is “guaranteed to have as many as 100 nuclear bombs.”
That claim is simply not supported by any solid facts on the ground and holds little credibility among nuclear experts.
Iran’s enrichment capacity is not even remotely close to reaching “100 nuclear bombs in a few years time” as Netanyahu claimed.
International inspections from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which monitors Iran’s compliance levels, haven’t cited any compliance problems with Iran thus far, according to the 8 reports that have already been issued since January 2015.
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