Following the unsuccessful talks in Vienna last week in an attempt to revive the 2015 nuclear deal, the Iranian regime has gone straight back to advancing its nuclear program. The seventh round of talks came to a close with no clear answer for the future of the nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), with experts suggesting that negotiations are headed for collapse.
The United States’ Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “Iran right now does not seem to be serious about doing what’s necessary to return to compliance, which is why we ended this round of talks in Vienna.”
Ahead of the recent talks, the regime sent a list of demands to the Western signatories of the deal, which include being removed from the United States’ sanction list before they will comply with the JCPOA. This past weekend, the regime’s top negotiator, Ali Bagheri Kani defiantly announced that the regime “will not back down from its demands.”
On December 1, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) sounded alarm bells by reporting that Tehran has started enriching uranium up to 20% purity at the Fordow plant. This marks a major violation of the 2015 nuclear deal, formally referred to as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), since that deal completely prohibits uranium enrichment at Fordow.
The previous round of talks came to an abrupt end five months ago as the regime stalled to buy time to further their nuclear program to reach their goal of producing weapons of mass destruction. Last month, the United Nations nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) stated that the regime is continuing to violate the terms of the nuclear deal by increasing its stockpiles of enriched uranium, above the levels that were agreed upon back in 2015.
Along with their latest demands during the talks in Vienna, the mullahs are attempting to blackmail Western powers into granting them more concessions by threatening to enrich uranium up to 90% purity.
It shouldn’t be too difficult to realize by now that Tehran’s threatening actions speak louder than its diplomatic acrobatics. Speculating about its intentions only distracts from observing its behavior.
The President-elect of the NCRI, Maryam Rajavi stated that because of the domestic threat caused by Iran’s now-incurable crises, the regime’s mullahs, along with Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei ‘will never abandon their nuclear weapons program’.
The regime is now too comfortable with blackmailing international powers as they have been consistently entered into appeasement policies and been ‘rewarded’ with concessions after concessions for decades. It will take a more decisive and hard-hitting policy to actually curb their malign activities once and for all.
The only practical solution is to re-impose the six UN Security Council resolutions that have been suspended, dismantle the regime’s nuclear sites and enrichment completely, and conduct anytime, anywhere inspections. Anything nourishes a crumbling theocracy while reinforcing dangerous illusions in the West.