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Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland highlighted the many benefits Iran would see if it agreed to this. President Biden’s nuclear dealbut she acknowledged that Iranian officials “didn’t choose that path.”
“The deal is on the table and can be accepted if the Iranians want it,” Nuland said at the Aspen Security Forum.
“It will get their oil back on the market, it will give them some relief from some of the sanctions that have been put in place. But so far they have not chosen this path.
“The Iranian people are paying the price as prices rise and inflation rises,” Nuland added. “If (the supreme leader) doesn’t make a deal, we will of course have to step up the pressure.”
British intelligence chief Richard Moore on Thursday said the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), informally known as the Iran Nuclear Deal, remains “the best available means” to contain Iran, but said he was “skeptical” that Iranian supreme leader Ali Khamenei would actually agree on him. .
“I’m not sure we’ll get there,” Moore said at the forum. “This discussion may be a bit academic because I don’t think supreme leader of iran wants to make a deal. So the Iranians will not want to stop negotiations either. So they can run around a bit.”
Moore argued that even if the deal went through, there would still be “a lot of work” because Iran continues to work on “destabilizing activities in our region.”
“What are they doing in Iraq, in Syria, even in Yemen, sponsoring the Houthis,” Moore said. “They still killing or attempting to trap dissidents abroad too, so there’s plenty to do.”
Nuland did not fully acknowledge that Iran would back out of the deal, instead pointing out that Iranian officials “haven’t backed out of it yet.”
“They didn’t quit when they could have done it in these many months that the deal was ready and in place. So, you know, let’s see what happens,” she said.
CIA Director William Burns, speaking Wednesday at the Aspen Security Forum, noted that within the framework of Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)“from which the last administration abandoned a few years ago, the breakthrough time to produce this amount of fissile material was just over a year.”
On Friday, he said that “the same breakout time can be measured not in more than a year, but in weeks.”