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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

5+1 Things To Know About the Iran Nuclear Deal

Syuzanna Petrosyan |
December 2, 2013 | 3:43 p.m. PST

Executive Producer

Although only a first step, the 24 November agreement between Iran and the P5+1 (five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) has important implications.

The Geneva agreement has marked a new era for U.S.-Iran relations. After decades of mistrust, diplomatic efforts paved the way for a comprehensive agreement regarding Iran's nuclear program.

(Didi Beck, Neon Tommy)
(Didi Beck, Neon Tommy)
1. The agreement freezes essential aspects of Iran's nuclear activities, such as its stockpile of low enriched uranium; number of operational centrifuges; and work at the Arak heavy-water facility; and rolls back Tehran's enrichment at higher concentration levels.

2. Iran has gained tangible economic and humanitarian sanctions relief as well as release of frozen money from oil sales. Europe and U.S. also agreed not to impose new sanctions over the next 6 months, something that some members of Congress are not too happy about.

3. Reaching a comprehensive agreement will be a longer and more difficult journey. Even more urgent negotiations will take place during the next six months between the West and Iran to turn the interim deal to a more far-reaching agreement.

4. The deal provides for daily visits by international inspectors to Iran's uranium enrichment sites in Natanz and Fordow.

5. The nuclear issue is not so much a technical matter but a geopolitical and strategic one, specifically Iran's role in the region. Here, the potential spoilers of a full agreement are abundant, whether in Israel, the Gulf, Europe, and Iran itself. Israeli Prime Minister Netenyahu said that the deal was a "historic mistake" and has made the world a more dangerous place.

+1. Critics of the deal point to the risk that the Iranian regime might collapse, that Iran has succeeded in entrenching its enrichment program and that it will now be emboldened to expand its regional activities. The critics, however, don't offer a workable alternative. In the absence of this accord, Iran's nuclear program almost certainly would have accelerated, leaving behind only the option of military confrontation with unpredictable and dangerous consequences.

Reach Executive Producer Syuzanna Petrosyan hereFollow her on Twitter.



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