Behind closed doors in Istanbul, last Monday, top diplomats from Iran and the P5+1 group (US, Russia, China, Britain, France plus Germany) gave Iran more details on their latest proposal to limit Iran’s most sensitive nuclear work in exchange for some relief from sanctions. An offer Iran declared has “no balance” because it asks Iran to give up more than it gets in return.
In marathon talks, the world powers clarified demands made last month that Iran limit uranium enrichment to 20 percent and put its Fordow underground facility out of service, in exchange for relief from sanctions that have crippled Iran’s economy.
Iran said the incentives were not strong enough, and the outcome of a year-long negotiations was still too ambiguous to take initial steps that could overcome mutual mistrust.
President Obama said, “If Iran’s nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, then there is a basis for a practical solution. Now is the time for the Iranian government to take immediate and meaningful steps to reduce tensions and work toward an enduring, long-term settlement of the nuclear issue.”
Top diplomats from Iran and the P5+1 group are due to meet again in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on April 5 and 6. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has stated he believes Iran plans to stall until they become a nuclear armed nation.
Iran has heavily fortified its new Arak nuclear plant, and possible plutonium processing plant, planned to open in early 2014, with a concentration of surface to air missiles and anti-aircraft weapons. Iran has not allowed inspection of this facility for one and a half years. For more information on the Middle East Crisis and the war of worldviews, go to:
“Tea Party Culture War; a clash of worldviews”, by author Stephen Johnston