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A nuclear end game as 2 stubborn nations dig in 

A nuclear end game as 2 stubborn nations dig in   Ruth Pollard

Bloomberg Opinion (TNS)  In the end, it will all come down to hard-liners in Washington and Tehran.

Months of indirect talks between the U.S. and Iran have failed to bring either country back into the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action after Donald Trump, in one of the greatest own-goals of his presidency, withdrew from the pact in 2018 and imposed harsh sanctions on the Persian Gulf nation. Tehran responded by expanding its nuclear program in breach of the accord.

That there is no agreement — and no firm prospect of one before the self-imposed mid-February deadline — is making everyone nervous. Led by the five other world powers still party to the accord, China, France, Germany, Russia and the U.K., the talks intensified in January and are now in what negotiators describe as the final stage. A senior U.S. State Department official told a briefing Monday the process was entering “the end game.”

Iran wants sanctions lifted. The U.S. wants Tehran to walk back its advanced centrifuges and stockpiles. Then there are questions over the sequencing, the order in which each step will occur. If these can’t be resolved, the U.S. official said that the world would be facing “a reality of mounting tensions and crisis.” Even senior leaders in Israel, whose previous government had run a bitter campaign against the pact, “now regret the JCPOA withdrawal and call it a terrible mistake,” the official said.


February 7, 2022 - Posted by | politics international

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