By: Akanksh Deekonda
Iran Nuclear Deal is the consequence of the Comprehensive Plan of Action, which was an agreement signed by P5 countries United States (U.S.), United Kingdom (U.K.), France, Russia, & China along with Germany, Iran and European Union (E.U.) to lift the economic sanctions imposed by the United States and Israel to stop nuclear actions of Iran. The majority population in Iran is Shias while in its neighbouring countries like Saudi Arabia and Israel is Sunnis. There is always a conflict between Shias and Sunnis. The U.S. had good relations with Saudi Arabia and Israel for trade purposes. As the U.S. support these countries, Iran started supporting Anti-Israel and Anti-U.S. troops like Hezbollah and Hamas. This positions Iran to rivalries with the UN.
Iran plans to develop Nuclear weapons since 1980s. Iran has then signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). The pursuit of nuclear weapons was against the NPT. To resist Iran in developing nuclear weapons, the United States with Israel conducted the following:
- Covert actions against Iran and its policies;
- Implemented a wide variety of economic sanctions;
- Started the use of succinate virus;
- Planned airstrikes;
- Finally targeted the assassination of nuclear scientists.
The covert actions performed by Iran, Israel and the US, therefore, threatened other countries. They raise the imminent danger in the Middle East affecting the stability of volatile Middle East before 2013. This ultimately led to form a peace agreement between these countries Iran and the US with the help of the United Nations Security Council, United Kingdom, European Union, France & Germany, and International Atomic Agency and this agreement known to be as Iran Nuclear Deal in 2015, which was signed between Iran, European Union & P5 countries at Vienna of Austria.
The arms embargo by this deal has placed a timeframe on ballistic missiles and conventional weapons, of eight and five years respectively. It was agreed that the embargo should be in place and that if the nuclear aspirations of Iran are to establish peace then they should be rewarded as such and have the embargo lifted.
According to the agreement, the Dispute Settlement process is to be handled with Iranian objections concerning some visits. The sophisticated environmental sampling including the technologies would have a good chance of detecting microscopic traces of nuclear materials as if uranium was to be found out within 24 days.
Sanctions relief will not be removed immediately, but with time as long as Iran complies with the accord. John Kerry said, “The IAEA signed an agreement with Iran to resolve its outstanding questions within three months. Sanctions relief will not occur until that investigation is complete”. Kerry said, “It’s not clear how exhaustive the IAEA report will be” (Dorell).
While the nuclear inspections of the Accord allows the IAEA to visit suspected enrichment sites, they have to request such inspection and Iran has 24 days to comply with the request. This seems to be too long of a process as so much can be hidden, discarded or converted within those 24 days. The anytime-anywhere rule is null and void if it gives any advance notice of inspection. Many help this view as it holds back the snap inspection fear against Iran. While some sites will have continuous monitoring, the fact that other sites will have no monitoring and will only have to comply after more than three weeks’ notice is a little alarming.
Iran would be ultimately violating the terms of the agreement as for the minds of the Americans as 37% calling that so likely; 23% said likely. The only 10% think it is barely likely that the agreement would be broken by Iran.
Under what conditions would Iran want to pursue the costly advances associated with India’s enrichment process, and then not go ahead with a nuclear weapons program? It is just surmising the general feeling, not an educated summary of the actual likelihood of Iran violating the terms.
This deal is more realistic, as it places more oversight on the process and places Iran on the global stage. While I disagree with the long request period of 24 days, I believe that overall the deal is a start to relationship building in the region. Although according to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned about US intentions toward Iran and said that there will be no negotiations with the United States outside of the nuclear deal reached in July. This view of the United States as the enemy will take a long time to overcome. Although this deal was a necessary step to global peace and non- nuclear proliferation, the United States has paid a price for that.
Position On Iran’s Nuclear Aspirations
The nuclear program of Iran has been a source of continuous concern for its adversaries like Israel and Saudi Arabia. In the present context of the Islamic State gaining momentum in the region, capturing the nuclear arsenal by this very ruthless militant outfit will be simply disastrous.
Iran is important to India and it would like that through meaningful negotiations, Iran should successfully navigate its current diplomatic situation with the P5+1, to move towards greater normalization for the following two reasons:
- The Indian Government is looking for alternatives for importing oil from the Middle Eastern region, which is in a state of intense turmoil. In July 2014, Oil Ministry approached Iran, and it is willing to revive the gas pipeline project that had been stalled in 2009 under pressure from the USA.
- An agreement for the development of Chabahar port is likely to be signed shortly and India intends to lease two berths at Chabahar for 10 years. The port will be developed in about a year and a half with an investment of $ 85.21 million.
The IAEA confirmed the breach of the limit set for the stockpile of the low enriched uranium by Iran. They, however, agreed to cooperate with the UN Security Council for the Nuclear Deal. Subsequently, the ties of Iran-US had already worsened when the US unilaterally withdrew from the Nuclear Deal and imposed the sanctions to cripple Iran from using the ballistic missiles and hampered its trade with other nations. Iran had already announced the expansion of its enrichment infrastructure back in June of 2018. However, those expansions were promised to be kept within the limit of the Nuclear Deal.
On 3 January 2020, US Forces assassinated Qasem Soleimani. The drone strike was conducted near the Baghdad International Airport, which claimed the life of Iranian Major General of Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Soleimani was the commander of the Quds Force, which had been alleged to be supporting the non-state characters in various countries such as the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Shia militia in Afghanistan.
US had also alleged that Iranian forces attacked the K-1 Air Base of American personnel in December 2019. On retaliation of that attack, US held air strikes, which killed 25 of the Iran, based Militiamen based in Iraq and Syria. A few days later, the Iranian Militiamen and their supporters attacked the US Embassy in the Green Zone. In response to the attack, the United Nations Department of Defence stated that as a preventive measure against future threats, the airstrike was launched near Baghdad International Airport. This also led to a non-binding resolution passed in the parliament of Iraq to expel all the foreign troops from the nation.
Soleimani’s killing quickly accelerated the tension between Iran-US posing a fear of military conflict between the two. This was because the enraged Iranian leaders vowed to take revenge. However, the US stands firm on their statement that they would conduct any pre-emptive attack against Iran backed military or Para-military groups. In retaliation of the airstrike, Iran conducted a series of missile attacks on the US troops in Iraq but zero casualties were recorded.
“Critics assert that allowing Iran to ramp up its enrichment capacity in the “out years” means that the deal merely postpones but does not prevent a nuclear-armed Iran” (Einhorn). The writer agrees with this statement, at this point of time but no one knows how the next ten years will change that outcome, the writer assert that the fact that this deal can postpone a nuclear-armed Iran for a decade is a good thing. The world will just have to wait and see that comes about in the next decade and what kind of agreement may have to be made at the end of this period. Einhorn makes a strong argument that “Iran’s leaders having paid the huge price of devastating sanctions and international isolation for pursuing nuclear weapons would judge that nuclear arms are a national imperative.” After having, the sanctions lifted for ten years, the writer do not believe that Iran would want to return to sanctions that hurt their economy and way of life.