October 18 was “Adoption Day” for the nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, reached in July by Iran, the European Union, and the P5+1 countries.
This means that the participants will begin to take the steps necessary to make sure they arrive at the day the deal will be implemented.
For Iran that means, among other measures, removing thousands of centrifuges and associated nuclear infrastructure; drastically reducing its enriched uranium stockpile, and removing the core of the Arak heavy-water reactor. For the European Union it means adopting the legislative framework for lifting all of its nuclear-related economic and financial sanctions; and for the United States, to begin preparations to implement the U.S’s commitments under the JCPOA, including lifting the nuclear-related sanctions specified in the agreement, once the International Atomic Energy Agency has verified that Iran has completed all of its nuclear steps.
President Barack Obama welcomed Adoption Day as “an important milestone toward preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapons and insuring its nuclear program is exclusively peaceful going forward.”
“It does not fully resolve the wide range of issues where we’ve got a big difference. And so we are going to have to continue to put pressure on them through the international community…But we’re not going to do that more effectively if they’re also on a separate track pursuing a nuclear weapon.”
Secretary of State John Kerry said, “The Middle East remains a deeply troubled place but every problem in the region would be made much worse if Iran had or was close to obtaining a nuclear weapon. The Iran agreement is the best way to ensure that this possibility is foreclosed now and for all time.”