U.S. and Iran Indirect Nuclear Talks


Elizabeth Boyle, Staff

            On Tuesday, April 6, indirect nuclear talks began between Iran and the U.S. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran Deal, could potentially be revived. On July 14, 2015 in Vienna, Austria, an agreement concerning the Iranian nuclear program was reached between Iran and the six permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: the U.S., U.K., China, France, Germany and Russia. In 2018 Former President Donald Trump withdrew the U.S. from the JCPOA. President Biden is pushing to restart the JCPOA and started negotiations with Tehran, the capital of Iran, albeit through proxies.

            The U.S. and Iranian diplomats are not speaking directly to one another. The talks from the past week were mediated by the other signatories of the agreement. The two main goals of the meeting right now are for Iran to agree to strict limitations on their nuclear program and for the U.S. to agree to lift the sanctions placed on Iran by President Trump. Iran is refusing to agree to anything until the sanctions are lifted. On the other hand, President Biden is hesitant to remove the sanctions because Iran has an upcoming election and the U.S. is concerned Iran will elect someone less likely to be open to diplomacy.

            The negotiations are expected to take a long time, seeing as neither side wishes to change. Russian diplomat Mikhail Ulyanov has been tweeting about how he is pleased that the negotiations have begun and that work toward the goals has been started. Jason Brodsky, a senior analyst at Iran International and former policy director at United Against Nuclear Iran, cautioned President Biden about rushing into a new deal and reminded the U.S. that other countries are watching these negotiations unfold.

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