US and EU3 must not ignore Iran’s nuclear distrust – OpEd – Eurasia Review

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The United States and Germany, the United Kingdom and France (EU3) are pushing to relaunch the former Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, despite all the current red flags linked to the Iranian regime. and its nuclear program.

While negotiations are ongoing, the Iranian regime continues to escalate its violations of the agreement, including spinning more centrifuges and enriching uranium to a much higher level, bringing Tehran closer to securing d ‘nuclear weapons. Even US Secretary of State Antony Blinken recently acknowledged that Iran’s escape time, the time it takes to gather enough fissile material for a single nuclear weapon, could be several weeks. He said Iran’s nuclear program “is advancing at a gallop … The longer it lasts, the shorter the burst time … it is now reduced, according to public reports, to a few months at best.” And if this continues, it will only take a few weeks. “

Iran is speeding up the program in part to threaten the US and the EU3, to gain more concessions in nuclear talks, and to push world powers to join the JCPOA. The truth is that the Islamic Republic is the one that desperately seeks the resumption of the agreement; its economy is in dire straits, it can hardly afford to finance its proxy groups across the Middle East, and it runs a large budget deficit largely because it cannot export oil at high levels. The nuclear deal will lift all sanctions and help the Iranian regime join the global financial system.

Tehran and some of the JCPOA supporters argue that the Trump administration should be blamed for Iran’s nuclear violations. But since there is a new administration in the United States, which has fully demonstrated its goal of returning to the nuclear deal, there is no excuse for Iran to continue to escalate.

The US and EU3 are also mistakenly rushing to relaunch the deal before Iranian President Hassan Rouhani leaves office. But Iran’s desperation and desire to return to the nuclear deal will not change when a new president is elected. Nuclear policy does not come from the President of Iran, but from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final say on all matters of Iran’s foreign policy. In fact, the Islamic Republic recently admitted that Iran’s nuclear policy will not change when a new president takes office, after government spokesman Ali Rabiei said on June 8: “The other parties to the nuclear deal can be assured that Iran will not break its obligations. as long as they respect their commitments. We are focused on finalizing the talks in the remaining time. At the moment, we are not interested in speculating in advance on the various possibilities.

Another red flag that the US and the EU3 ignore relates to recent statements issued by Rafael Grossi, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Grossi’s latest statements suggest the Iranian regime was violating the 2015 nuclear deal even before the Trump administration pulled the United States out of the JCPOA.

Grossi told an IAEA board meeting in Vienna on June 7: “After many months, Iran has failed to provide the necessary explanations for the presence of particles of nuclear material in any of the three places where the agency has carried out complementary (evaluations). In the absence of such an explanation from Iran, I am deeply concerned that nuclear material has been present in the three undeclared locations in Iran and that the current locations of such nuclear material are not not known by the agency. “

Iran’s clandestine activities during the nuclear deal were first exposed by Israel. Then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in his address to the United Nations General Assembly that Iran has a “secret atomic warehouse to store massive amounts of equipment and material from the secret nuclear weapons program. of Iran ”. The IAEA initially ignored Israel’s revelation. But later, IAEA inspectors were able to detect traces of radioactive uranium at the site.

Germany, France, UK and US must not attempt to revert to the old flawed nuclear deal that Iran allegedly violated even during its implementation.

The Biden administration and European powers must not ignore IAEA warnings. The US and the EU3 must halt nuclear talks until Tehran fully cooperates with the IAEA and addresses concerns about nuclear material found at three undeclared nuclear sites in Iran.

  • Dr Majid Rafizadeh is an Iranian-American political scientist trained at Harvard. He is a leading expert on Iran and United States foreign policy, a businessman and Chairman of the United States International Council. He sits on the boards of the Harvard International Review, the Harvard International Relations Council and the US-Middle East Chamber for Commerce and Business. Twitter: @Dr_Rafizadeh

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