Interim International Nuclear Arms Accord with Iran a Welcome First Step to Reduce Threat of War

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Posted Nov. 27, 2013

Interview with Kingston Reif, director of Nuclear Non-Proliferation, conducted by Scott Harris

iran

In what’s being described as a major breakthrough in the long process of working toward an international accord with Iran over its nuclear program, negotiations in Geneva have produced an interim agreement that could lay the groundwork to achieve a comprehensive agreement. It’s been more than 34 years since the U.S. broke off diplomatic relations with Iran in the aftermath of the revolutionary government’s November 1979 takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, and the holding of 52 American hostages.

Iran and the P5+1 nations, which includes the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council – the U.S., Britain, Russia France and China, plus Germany, signed a six-month agreement that obligates Iran to halt most of its nuclear research activities, providing time for further talks that negotiators hope will lead to a final agreement. Iran in return will benefit from a partial lifting of some international economic sanctions that have severely damaged the Islamic Republic’s economy.

While President Obama has applauded the interim agreement with Iran as an historic achievement, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has charged that the accord is a historic mistake, asserting that Israel is not bound by the deal, while maintaining the right to unilaterally attack Iran’s nuclear research facilities. Many congressional Republicans and some Democrats unhappy with the deal are pursuing additional sanctions against Iran that have the potential to derail the agreement. Between The Lines’ Scott Harris spoke with Kingston Reif, director of Nuclear Non-Proliferation at The Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation. Here Reif explains why he believes the interim international agreement made with Iran is a positive first step toward preventing Iran from producing nuclear weapons, thereby reducing the threat of war.

Find more information about The Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation by visiting armscontrolcenter.org.

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