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Iran Deal Extended But Trouble Lurking
December 15, 2014
Kerry, Ashton, and Zarif in Oman where the most recent negotiations took place.
The deadline for a diplomatic solution to Iran’s nuclear program was extended from Nov. 24th until July 1st, 2015. This is great news since it allows more time to let diplomacy work. However, there are hardliners in Congress who would like to add additional sanctions against Iran in the hopes of pressuring them to accept an agreement. The problem is, these additional sanctions could severely undermine the negotiation process. Expect to see action alerts from PSR in January after the new Congress is sworn in and looking to pass additional sanctions legislation.
The interim agreement, known as the Joint Plan of Action (JPOA), has shown how diplomacy has been a success thus far. Iran is farther from making a nuclear weapon than ever before. This interim agreement will continue to be in place until a final comprehensive agreement is reached by July 1st. The JPOA has proved a success:
- Iran has been prevented from enriching uranium past 5%,
- Iran has diluted half of its stockpile of 20% enriched uranium,
- Iran has halted activities at the Natanz and Fordow sites, and Arak plutonium reactor,
- Iran has allowed for the IAEA to enhance its monitoring activities.
This goes to show that diplomacy is working, and that Congress should let it continue to work by avoiding any additional sanctions which could undermine the negotiation process.