Iran Sets Framework For Nuclear Program Negotiations: Demands Lifting Of All Sanctions

Moments ago, John Kerry sat down with the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to once again attempt to reach a deal on the Iranian nuclear program.

As BBC reported, “Iran has been negotiating over the nuclear issue since 2006 with the P5+1 – the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, plus Germany. Since Mr Rouhani’s election in June, Iranian officials have reached out to the West, saying they want to address concerns over Iran’s nuclear programme. On Tuesday, Mr Rouhani told the General Assembly that he was prepared to engage in “time-bound and results-oriented” talks. On Thursday, he called for stricter controls on nuclear weapons as part of a global effort to eventually rid the world of them. “No nation should possess nuclear weapons, since there are no right hands for these wrong weapons,” he said, speaking on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement at the General Assembly.”

As is well-known, The P5+1 have repeatedly asked Iran to halt production and stockpiling of uranium enriched to 20% – a step away from achieving a nuclear weapons capability. They have also demanded Iran shut down the Fordo underground enrichment facility.

In return, and perhaps emboldened by the recent embarrassment of the Obama administration not only at the hands of the diplomatic finesse of one Vladimir Putin, but indirectly, from Syria’s president Assad, Iran was prompt to make it clear that in a multi-polar world in which the US is no longer the undisputed superpower, it has its own set of demands.

To wit:

BREAKING. Iranian FM Zarif: there has to be a lifting of all sanctions, hope to be able to move in that direction in a short span of time

— Charlie Kaye (@CharlieKayeCBS) September 26, 2013

So how will the US respond: will it lift sanctions against the crippled nation, where a dollar shortage has led to the emergence of a black market and a dramatic loss in the value of the local currency which however was insufficient to break the regime, however pushing Iran to set up bilateral trade arranagements that largely bypass the US currency?

Or, will the US as a token of good will, succumb to the Iranian demands, and do as Iran asks, further stepping away from the much desired role of a morally superior Globocop?

We eagerly await Kerry’s response.

* * *

Update: Iran appears happy:

BREAKING: Iran’s FM says world powers agreed to try to fast-track nuclear negotiations to within a year.

— The Associated Press (@AP) September 26, 2013


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