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Iran: The JCPOA Is Seemingly No Longer Fit for Purpose

Deceiving and not being serious in the nuclear talks is the Iranian regime's tactic to save time and achieve the nuclear weapon.
Deceiving and not being serious in the nuclear talks is the Iranian regime’s tactic to save time and achieve the nuclear weapon.

The 7th round of nuclear deals(JCPOA) talks in Vienna between the Iranian regime and the Western signatories of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal came to a close last week. Last Friday, Dec 3, many Western officials expressed their apprehension to the demands that the regime has issued, leading to many observers to surmise that the nuclear negotiations have failed.

Antony Blinken, the United States’ Secretary of State stated that the regime is not being serious about complying to the nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) so the decision was made to end the latest round of talks.

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) said, “According to Reuters, the European powers expressed ‘disappointment and concern’ over the regime’s demands which they believe ‘were incompatible with the deal’s terms or went beyond them’.”

Among the regime’s demands, they have stated that unless the U.S. lifts all of the sanctions against them and return to the deal, they will not honor their commitments. Over the weekend, Ali Bagheri Kani, the regime’s top negotiator, claimed that the regime “will not back down from its demands.”

Back in 2015, the Institute for Science and International Security reported that the regime had violated the deal for their refusal to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), who were investigating the ‘possible military dimensions’ of their nuclear program.

The NCRI said, “In 2017, the Iranian Resistance revealed information showing the Iranian regime’s research and development and nuclear activities were continuing at the Parchin military site, located southwest of the Iranian capital Tehran and out of reach of IAEA inspectors.”

Earlier this year, the regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei warned that their uranium enrichment program would far exceed the threshold dictated by the JCPOA terms. He stated, “Iran’s enrichment threshold will not be 20%, and the purity can increase as needed anywhere in the country, i.e., Enrichment may increase up to 60% for nuclear propulsion or other tasks.”

A few months later, the administration of the former regime president Hassan Rouhani announced that they were actively enriching uranium up to 60% purity, not far off reaching what is considered as weapons grade.

The examples above all indicate that the installation of the JCPOA has done nothing to limit the regime’s nuclear capabilities in the past 6 years. The nuclear deal is a lost cause and reviving the deal will not change that.

The NCRI said, “The regime faces a restive society that has never accepted the mullahs’ backward rule. By closing ranks in the regime, Khamenei has decided to increase domestic oppression and pave the way for the development of a nuclear weapon to advance its regional meddling, terrorism, and warmongering.”

While the U.S. sanctions have crippled the regime’s economy, especially by attacking Iran’s oil industry which the economy is heavily reliant on, the state-run Arman daily wrote in September that the regime’s malign activities “have not decreased.”

Corruption at the highest levels of the regime, and their need to fund their illicit activities and support proxy terrorist groups, are putting extreme economic pressure on Iranian society. As a result of the socio-economic problems in Iran, the people are living in misery and struggling to survive and support their families.

The cost of the regime’s nuclear program has been estimated at between 1.5 to 2 trillion dollars. As the Arman daily wrote in their publication on Saturday, “…there is no economic justification [for the regime to pursue a nuclear program.].”

The NCRI said, “The regime could have used this amount of money to address Iran’s social and economic problems. Sanctions could be easily lifted if Tehran once and for all abandoned its nuclear program or its other malign activities. But Khamenei has tied the fate of his regime to obtaining nuclear bomb.”

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