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December 02, 2020

Iran's Parliament Is Helping Joe Biden To Rejoin The Nuclear Deal

President elect Joe Biden plans to renew the U.S. participation in the nuclear agreement with Iran. Trump had left the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) which Iran and six other nations had signed. 

Biden is under pressure to attach preconditions for a U.S. return to the deal which Iran would not accept:

Biden and his team have been paying lip service to the notion of rejoining the JCPOA. However, the preconditions they have attached to such an action – Iran would have to return to full compliance first, and commit to immediate follow-on negotiations on a deal that would be more restrictive – were widely seen as a deal-breaker. The fact is, many of Biden’s closest advisers – including Secretary of State-designee Antony Blinken and National Security Advisor-designee Jake Sullivan – have indicated that Biden may have no choice but to continue the Trump policy of sanctions-based ‘maximum pressure’.

So far Biden himself had been somewhat ambivalent about the issue. But in a recent interview with New York Times columnist Tom Friedman he seems to reject the use of preconditions for a JCPOA return to get to a bigger deal:

The view of Biden and his national security team is that once the deal is restored by both sides, there will have to be, in very short order, a round of negotiations to seek to lengthen the duration of the restrictions on Iran’s production of fissile material that could be used to make a bomb — originally 15 years — as well as to address Iran’s malign regional activities, through its proxies in Lebanon, Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

Ideally, the Biden team would like to see that follow-on negotiation include not only the original signatories to the deal — Iran, the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France, Germany and the European Union — but also Iran’s Arab neighbors, particularly Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Earlier this week, I wrote a column arguing that it would be unwise for the United States to give up the leverage of the Trump-imposed oil sanctions just to resume the nuclear deal where it left off. We should use that leverage to also get Iran to curb its exports of precision-guided missiles to its allies in Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Iraq, where they threaten Israel and several Arab states. I still believe that.

Biden’s team is aware of that argument, and does not think it is crazy — but for now they insist that America’s overwhelming national interest is to get Iran’s nuclear program back under control and fully inspected.
In their view, Iran’s development of a nuclear weapon poses a direct national security threat to the United States and to the global nuclear weapons control regime, the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

“Look, there’s a lot of talk about precision missiles and all range of other things that are destabilizing the region,” Biden said. But the fact is, “the best way to achieve getting some stability in the region” is to deal “with the nuclear program.”
Then, Biden said, “in consultation with our allies and partners, we’re going to engage in negotiations and follow-on agreements to tighten and lengthen Iran’s nuclear constraints, as well as address the missile program.” The U.S. always has the option to snap back sanctions if need be, and Iran knows that, he added.

That is still a bit murky. Lift the sanctions that were put onto Iran by Trump to get back to the JCPOA but then introduce new sanctions on Iran for its non-nuclear missile program? That is NOT going to work.

Biden will have little time to make up his mind and to return to the deal. In response to the Israeli murder of Iran's top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fahrizade the Iranian parliament has taken steps to leave the limits of the nuclear deal unless the U.S. returns to it as soon as Biden is in office:

Iran’s top political chamber gave final approval to a bill forcing President Hassan Rouhani to end international nuclear inspections unless the U.S. lifts key sanctions by February, giving the incoming Biden administration just weeks to make a diplomatic breakthrough.

The powerful Guardian Council, a political and legal body made up of senior clerics and scholars, ratified the bill on Tuesday and made it a legal requirement, while extending the deadline for sanctions relief to two months, instead of one, Iranian state TV reported.

That would appear to give Rouhani’s government -- severely weakened since outgoing U.S. President Donald Trump walked away from the 2015 nuclear deal -- barely two weeks after successor Joe Biden enters office to make major strides toward brokering the removal of U.S. oil and banking sanctions.

The details of the new law are yet unknown. One part orders the government to lessen the IAEA oversight of nuclear sites in Iran. Another instruction is to create a stockpile of higher enriched Uranium that potentially could be used to further enrich to weapons grade levels:

The plan, among other things, requires the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) to produce at least 120 kg of 20-percent enriched uranium annually and store it inside the country within two months after the adoption of the law.

The new Iranian law is supporting Biden's argument that a fast return to the nuclear deal is the more assuring path than to bet on time and additional sanctions to gain additional concessions which Iran is anyway unlikely to give.

He should immediately lift the sanctions against Iran and fully reinstate the U.S. as a JCPOA member. Iran has said that it would return to all limits of the deal as soon as that has happened.

The big pipe dream of follow-on negotiation which also include Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates can than be pushed out to a (much) later date.

Posted by b on December 2, 2020 at 17:20 UTC | Permalink

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America and the EU fooled the Islamic Republic into signing the JCPOA in 2015 to partially destroy and dismantle Iran's nuclear industry.
They succeeded beyond best expectations.
Western powers must congratulate themselves on not only having crippled Iran's advances in nuclear technology; but also seeing it now set further back than where it was 5 years ago before the JCPOA.
It would be interesting to see what lessons Iranian decision makers will take away from this humiliating chapter in their dealings with the West.
As long as Israel dominates the politics of the region, there will be no reconciliation between Iran and the West.

Posted by: Aren Haich | Dec 4 2020 23:26 utc | 201

Member of National Security Commission of the Iranian Parliament on the matter of Rouhani government’s initial reaction, not admitting that Dr. Fakhrizadeh was a key nuclear scientist. The video is in Persian, directly related to what we have been discussing here. I suggest “mammad booghi” or our friend, Fyi provide an English transcript for our host and the rest of MoA community

Posted by: Framarz | Dec 4 2020 23:53 utc | 202


Posted by: Framarz | Dec 5 2020 0:22 utc | 203

not only html parssing but also simple url parssing no more available

Posted by: Framarz | Dec 5 2020 0:47 utc | 204

working for me

Posted by: Grieved | Dec 5 2020 1:25 utc | 205

To whom it may concern, Dr. Abassi rejecting any connection between Shahid Fakhrizadeh and barjam:

Posted by: Sammy | Dec 5 2020 7:13 utc | 206

Never forget how the Russians describe America: Non-Agreement Capable.

"Non-Agreement Capable" is merely diplomatic speak for: a Nation of Lying, Backstabbing Snakes.

As such, it doesn't make a damn difference if Biden "sincerely" wants to rejoin the JCPOA (which he isn't), any agreement that the United Snakes of America makes is worth even less than their lies about Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq.

America, the Land of the Free, is in reality the Land of the Free Lie.

Posted by: ak74 | Dec 5 2020 8:14 utc | 207

@201 Mr.Haich

Correct assessment to which I can say that shit happens.
Did you know that during WW1 the population of Iran was decimated into half, directly by the actions of the british fake empire.,concealed%20for%20nearly%20a%20century.

In any case the traitors will be brought to justice , no doubt , and you are right the anglozios and co. fucked us badly , I promise you, it will not happen again.

Posted by: Sammy | Dec 5 2020 9:25 utc | 208

How Rouhani government reacted on the issue of assassination of Dr. Fakhrizadeh is indeed a scandal.
Here watch the video, member of Parliaments National Security Commission explains why Rouhani government initially denied that Dr. Fakhrizadeh was key nuclear scientist. Unfortunately the Video is in Persian but maybe our friends mammad booghi or Fyi can provide English transcript to MoA community since it touch our discussions here. (I tried to post yesterday but utf-8 encoded link refused to publish and then I noticed even the short link does not publish)

dolatebahar (dot) ir/news/8505

Posted by: Framarz | Dec 5 2020 9:38 utc | 209

So the global debt is 200 trillion usd.
To whom does the world owe 200 trillon?
3 guesses are allowed :-)

Posted by: Sammy | Dec 5 2020 11:13 utc | 210

What I wrote a few days back that Iran wants to limit Biden on negotiations was correct as Dr Marandi is basically saying same thing

Posted by: Kooshy | Dec 5 2020 19:30 utc | 211

Trying to catch up with interesting comments. Here are some thoughts.

‘War with Iran’ prediction (for some, there is no distinction between prediction and advocation) is a cottage industry. It’s an exercise in fantasy. An exercise in futility. It is bandied about with or without logic. It’s practitioners seem to have a dual mentality of Iran. On the one hand, Iran is weak and can’t respond to certain acts. On the other hand, Iran is strong and should be feared. They hold these contradiction openly and without regard to facts, or logic. Our mendacious (mentor?) commenter, has written reams on it, here, and at the site mentioned above and elsewhere. Where is he by the way? This is his most favorite thread (in a projection he accuses me of being single minded). I hope it’s not Covid related. I owe him an abject apology, when the war does start. NOT, told him, he wouldn’t see the day.
Sorry fellers, barflies, it’s an over a decade long jab at our SF resident.

With regards to bloochbstan, what people don’t realize is that people of Iran, identify themselves as Iranian first, then their sect/race/identity. Iranian Baloochy, Iranian Arab, Iranian Azeri, Iranian Kurd, Iranian Lur. Not the other way around. Many have dreamed of Balkanizing Iran. Will not happen.
Can anyone name a country that violated the Monroe Doctrine? Was is the mighty old Soviet Union? Was it the current China, or Russia, the so called super-powers?

No? you can’t? OK, here is the answer: Iran. It stomped on it. Shredded it. Eviscerated it.

Denigration of Iran goes on every day, like articles recently, that, Iranians couldn’t drown their mock-up aircraft carrier in the right place. It has now become a maritime hazard.
Sometimes they give it away though, like a statement at the end of the article that a placement of a flotation-device (buoy) would eliminate the hazard, never mentioning the message of mock-up aircraft carrier in the first place. No link. I am sure you’ve seen stupider articles.

Can anyone here name that last country that went toe to toe with the empire — bombing it’s bases — with impunity and telegraphed intentions, and got away with it?

No? you can’t? OK, here is the answer: Iran. Bitch slap, “head trauma” heard-round-the-world.

January 8th 2020, the day the empire died.

Posted by: Sakineh Bagoom | Dec 6 2020 2:24 utc | 212

Iran is questioning the integrity of the IAEAs confidentiality agreements after a 'leak' of the Iranian intention to install new centrifuges at Natanz:

Iran’s permanent representative to Vienna-based international organizations has called on the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to ensure confidentiality of safeguards information after a confidential report by the UN nuclear watchdog on the Natanz facility was leaked to the media.


I've never seen Iran complaining about previous leaks from the IAEA, so it's interesting that this is an issue now.

To me it looks like Iran is using all the available tools to strengthen their position relative to the IAEA and JCPOA 'partners'... in other words to make sure of their moral high ground when or if they finally leave the JCPOA and perhaps even other agreements with the IAEA.

The first step would be to discredit and remove the illusion of integrity the IAEA has regarding it's relations with Iran.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Dec 6 2020 3:48 utc | 213

@ak47 207
...any agreement that the United States of America makes is worth even less. . .
A big part of the problem is that these agreements (JCPOA and some with Iraq) which are really treaties are not in compliance with the Constitution, but are dictatorial, and are therefore easily overturned.

Article 2, Section 1:
The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America . . .Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:—"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Section 2:
He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur . .

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 6 2020 3:51 utc | 214

@ AB 213
I've never seen Iran complaining about previous leaks from the IAEA, so it's interesting that this is an issue now.
from Politico, Jul 1, 2015. . .
". . .Although Amano was welcomed in Tehran Thursday, many Iranian officials mistrust his agency, which they consider riddled with western spies. They also have complained that its interviews with Iranian nuclear scientists have helped to identify them for assassination, allegedly by Israel and the U.S.. “Without a doubt some of the inspectors in the [IAEA] are spies,” Ali Akbar Velayati, foreign policy adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader, said last month. ". . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 6 2020 4:00 utc | 215

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 6 2020 4:00 utc | 215

Thanks for the reminder. Let me rephrase that to:

"It's been a long time since I've seen Iran complaining about previous leaks from the IAEA, so it's interesting that this is an issue now."

Still, I think it's part of the overall effort maneuvering for negotiating high ground.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Dec 6 2020 6:16 utc | 216

The parliament in Iran is made of fundamentalists, voted by a mere 37% participation rate. THey want to end JCPOA, a disaster for Iran. The Guardian Council is made up of Rouhani's oldest friends, the elderly and dying clergy. They want to keep the likes of Rouhani in power forever.

Posted by: A | Dec 6 2020 21:21 utc | 217

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