The Road to Iran’s Agreement on a Framework Nuclear Deal

The Road to Iran’s Agreement on a Framework Nuclear Deal
Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif speaks during a press conference in Lausanne, Switzerland, April 2, 2015, (AP photo by Brendan Smialowski).

As The Associated Press reports, “After marathon negotiations, the United States, Iran and five other world powers announced a deal Thursday outlining limits on Iran’s nuclear program so it cannot lead to atomic weapons, directing negotiators toward a comprehensive agreement within three months.”

A fact sheet distributed by the U.S. State Department provides the key parameters of the framework nuclear deal, with surprisingly specific terms. Iran has agreed to reduce its number of installed centrifuges by approximately two-thirds and not to enrich uranium over 3.67 percent for at least 15 years—a level suitable as fuel for nuclear power plants, but well below the 90 percent needed as fissile material for nuclear weapons. Iran will receive significant sanctions relief “if it verifiably abides by its commitments” through rigorous international inspections.

Speaking in the White House Rose Garden, U.S. President Barack Obama hailed the “historic” agreement, calling it “a good deal, a deal that meets our core objectives.” He added, referring to congressional threats to undermine a final agreement, “The issues at stake here are bigger than politics. These are matters of war and peace, and they should be evaluated based on the facts.”

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