(JNS.org) Iran has reached a preliminary six-month agreement on its nuclear program with the P5+1 powers during diplomatic talks in Geneva amid concerns about the deal from Israel, Saudi Arabia, Congress, and Jewish groups.
According to the agreement, Iran promises to stop enriching uranium beyond 5 percent and dilute all existing stockpiles already enriched to 20 percent. The country will not install any new centrifuges and will allow regular monitoring by international nuclear inspectors. In return, the U.S. has agreed to provide up to $7 billion in sanctions relief, the White House said. It can do so by executive order without approval from Congress.
“Today... diplomacy opened up a new path toward a world that is more secure," U.S. President Barack Obama said in a televised address. The purpose of the deal is “to require Iran to prove the peaceful nature of its program and to ensure that it cannot build a nuclear weapon,” U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said in a statement.
But U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill) said the deal “appears to provide the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism with billions of dollars in exchange for cosmetic concessions that neither fully freeze nor significantly roll back its nuclear infrastructure.”
“Furthermore, the deal ignores Iran's continued sponsorship of terrorism, its testing of long-range ballistic missiles and its abuse of human rights,” he said.
Republican Jewish Coalition Executive Director Matt Brooks said, “President Obama's diplomacy is giving cheer to Tehran's rogue regime and causing alarm among our friends in the region—including Israel, Saudi Arabia and most the other Gulf states. Congress and the American people need to speak out against this flawed deal.”
“A diplomatic solution is unquestionably the preferred approach to resolving the Iranian nuclear issue. But for years Iran has maintained an indisputable posture of deceit and defiance towards the United Nations, the International Atomic Energy Agency, and nations around the world, including, centrally, the P5+1,” said American Jewish Committee Executive Director David Harris.
Israeli Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz said the deal is “more likely to bring Iran closer to having a bomb.”