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Possibility For Success In Iran Nuclear Negotiations


Iran US deputy FMs Araghchi Sherman Vienna (File)

U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman, America’s top nuclear negotiator, spoke of the possibility of success and the danger of failure in reaching a comprehensive accord involving Iran’s nuclear program.

In a major address in Washington concerning the P5+1 nuclear negotiations with Iran, U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman, America’s top nuclear negotiator, spoke of the possibility of success and the danger of failure in reaching a comprehensive accord involving Iran’s nuclear program.

“We have made impressive progress on issues that originally seemed intractable. We have cleared up misunderstandings and held exhaustive discussions on every element of a possible text.”

Yet, Under Secretary Sherman said, difficult issues remain which must be worked out “with a sense of urgency and purpose.”

“The Security Council imposed sanctions on Iran for a reason, and that is because the government violated its obligations under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, engaged in secret nuclear weapons-related activities, and was less than transparent in reporting to international agencies. That past has created a thick cloud of doubt that cannot be dissipated by Tehran’s words and promises alone.”

The international community will decide to suspend and lift sanctions on Iran, Under Secretary Sherman said, “only if and when Iran takes convincing and verifiable steps to show that its nuclear program is, and will remain, exclusively and entirely peaceful:”

“That is a reasonable standard that Iran can readily meet. It is a standard that Iran must meet. And it is the key to ending Iran’s international isolation.”

A comprehensive nuclear accord, Under Secretary Sherman stressed, would result in “extraordinary” benefits, including making possible greater prosperity for the Iranian people; protecting U.S. allies from a new and dangerous threat; lessening the incentive for a regional nuclear arms race, thereby strengthening the international nuclear proliferation regime; and demonstrating the value of “clear-eyed diplomacy” that can reach “win-win solutions achievable in no other way.”

Under Secretary Sherman acknowledged that a ”forest of distrust” exists between Iran and the United States, and emphasized that the U.S. will not accept any arrangement that it cannot verify and will also not make any promises it can’t keep. “Just as we will demand good faith,” she said, “so will we demonstrate good faith.”

”We hope Iran will make the right choice,” said Under Secretary Sherman. “We are ready to do so. . .This is the time to finish the job.”

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