The problems with the Iran nuclear deal

The Iran nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), was signed in July 2015 and was celebrated as a foreign policy breakthrough by Western governments but a lot of the terms and conditions were secret; only now being revealed.

The Associated Press published a leaked document which showed that Iran would be able to enrich uranium again in 2026, rather than 2030 as previously reported. The regime reacted angrily claiming that the leak violated the deal and the President of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Dr. Ali Akbar Salehi said that this leak will permit Iran to enrich uranium at a higher capacity than before the agreement was made.

Ali Larijani, the speaker of the Iranian Parliament, said: “The hostile measures against the nuclear deal have reached a point where Iran was left with no choice but to confront.”

Stevenson, a former Member of the European Parliament for Scotland, wrote: “It has now become clear that the deal was quite one-sided, containing page after page of clauses relating to the lifting of sanctions, in return for which we got very little, apart from a few scant paragraphs detailing Iranian cooperation in slowing down its nuclear enrichment process for a period of up to 15 years, which we now know in fact to be much less. As far as scrutiny of the nuclear program is concerned, regular inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) are limited to the Natanz site in Isfahan Province, the country’s main underground nuclear facility with over 19,000 operational centrifuges.”

He pointed out the Natanz was only revealed to the West by the opposition group, the People’s Mojahedin of Iran (PMOI); Iran had been keeping it secret. If they kept Natanz secret, how can we trust that they aren’t keeping another site secret?

Stevenson, who was also President of the Parliament’s Delegation for Relations with Iraq and the Chair of Friends of a Free Iran Intergroup until 2014, stated: “It should be remembered that Iran entered into nuclear negotiations because, following the whistleblowing of the Iranian resistance, sanctions had crippled the Iranian economy. Nevertheless, to capitulate to almost every Iranian demand exposed a level of weakness that has been eagerly exploited by the mullahs ever since. The lifting of sanctions released an estimated $150 billion in frozen assets, providing a windfall for a regime whose biggest export is terror; a regime which funds Hezbollah in Lebanon, Bashar al-Assad in Syria, the Houthi rebels in Yemen, and the brutal Shi’ite militias in Iraq.”

Iran’s excessive call for retaliation against the West cannot be overlooked; Russia has delivered S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to them and North Korean missile experts have visited them.

Despite drawing criticism from UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon launching nuclear tests in violation of the deal, Iran has not stopped. In fact, Iran threatened to tear up the nuclear pact.

Stevenson recommended that the US monitor the situation closely and adopt tough measures where necessary.

He said: “The West must not be passive when dealing with Iran’s continuous violations of the nuclear agreement and its aggressive regional interventions, terrorism, and human rights violations. It was hard-hitting sanctions that forced the mullahs to sit down to negotiate and thus we should take a tough line by imposing new sanctions for any further violations.”