The United States has dropped its objections to certain incentives the European Union is offering Iran to stop its uranium-enrichment program.
Enriched uranium can be used as fuel in nuclear power plants but can also be a key component of nuclear weapons. Many suspect that Iran's clerical regime is secretly trying to build nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian energy program.
The European Union has been negotiating with Iran since December to turn a temporary suspension of uranium-enrichment and related activities by Iran into a permanent ban. Now the U.S. says it will drop its objection to Iran’s application to join the World Trade Organization and will consider, on a case-by-case basis, the licensing of spare parts for Iranian civilian aircraft. U.S. National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley explained the U.S. decision:
"What we have done is removed our objection to two elements of a package that the Europeans are putting together that they want to offer Iran in [the] negotiations the Europeans are conducting with Iran to try and get Iran to give up its nuclear weapons ambitions. We've talked to the Europeans about it. It's clear if those negotiations fail, then we are agreed with the Europeans that the next step is to take the matter to the U-N Security Council."
Mr. Hadley says the Europeans and the U.S. now agree on an agenda for Iran:
"Which is not only dealing with the nuclear issue, but also dealing with Iranian sponsorship for terror, obstruction of the Middle East peace process, and also failure to give freedom and democracy to their people."
White House National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley says that the United States believes that "the cause of freedom for the Iranian people has been advanced by the understandings we've reached with the Europeans."
The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States government.