Iran’s Parliament Wants Changes to Nuke Deal

Earlier today, the Nuclear Committee of the Iranian Parliament released a fact sheet “to declare the revisions needed to be made in the Lausanne statement that was issued by Tehran and the world powers as a framework understanding at the end of their nuclear talks in Switzerland earlier this month.” The parliamentary fact sheet objected to the statement put out by John Kerry et al.:

The Iranian Parliament factsheet for a revision to the Lausanne agreement came after the US released a factsheet different from the joint statement issued by Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and head of the G5+1 in nuclear talks with Iran, at the end of the latest round of Iran-world powers nuclear talks in Switzerland on April 2, known as the Lausanne statement.

The US factsheet that was released only a few hours after the Lausanne framework understanding caused fury in Iran, encouraging many to raise deep doubt about the results of the talks and US accountability and trustworthiness.

The parliamentary document emphasizes the need to “[respect] the redlines and guidelines specified by Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei,” and proposes to backtrack on some commitments made by Iran’s negotiators in Lausanne.

Specifically, the parliamentary fact sheet proposes that the agreement last for only five years, after which Iran would carry out an unrestrained nuclear program. It would permit the operation of 10,000 centrifuges, which would be replaced after five years by centrifuges of the most modern design. It makes explicit that there will be “immediate termination of all sanctions in a single step and on the first day of the implementation of the final agreement.” Iran would retain the capability to enrich uranium to 20% if “needed.” And there would be only a minimal inspection regime:

Once done, the principle stated by the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution – that security and military sanctities and boundaries shouldn’t be violated and that the inspections should be carried out at conventional levels similar to all other countries – will be respected and materialized.

There is much more, but you get the drift. The purpose and effect of the parliamentary fact sheet are unclear. Perhaps it is meant to balance out calls for improvement of the deal in the West. (The FARS report on the fact sheet specifically mentions the Corker bill.) Perhaps there really is opposition to a deal along the lines Iranian negotiators have been aiming for within Iran’s parliament. At a minimum, the parliamentary fact sheet casts further doubt on whether an agreement between Iran and the Western powers actually exists.

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