The Student News Site of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student News Site of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student News Site of DePaul University

The DePaulia

Iran ready to reach nuclear deal despite obstacles

Iranian foreign advisor Ali Akbar Velayati said Tuesday that the “situation is ready” to strike a deal over Iran’s contested nuclear program, according to the Associated Press.

Negotiations last month in Geneva began the difficult task of reaching a deal that would halt U.S. sanctions on Iran, as well as curb Iran’s nuclear development. But according to Reuters, talks in Vienna were disrupted last week when the United States revealed new sanctions on companies and individuals in Iran in a continued effort to make nuclear development difficult for the nation.

The extension of sanctions led to an outcry at the international level and caused Iran to leave the meeting, Reuters reported. But despite that, officials seem eager to resume negotiations.

“Continuation of the talks and loyalty to the Geneva deal is Iran’s policy,” Velayati said, according to AP.

The new sanctions are far from the only roadblocks standing between these nations and a historical change. For starters, an agreement will not necessarily lead to a normalized relationship between the United States and Iran, who last had diplomatic relations in 1980, following the 1979 Iranian Revolution.

“The potential deal with Iran is enormously significant, though there is a long way to go before we see anything approaching a normalization of relations,” DePaul political science professor Scott Hibbard said. “There is simply too much historical baggage, and hardliners within both political communities who will oppose any kind of rapprochement.”

The negotiations with Iran are also seen as a point of contention among key American allies in the Middle East, particularly Israel and Saudi Arabia. The government of Saudi Arabia has been supportive of a U.S. intervention in Syria, seen largely as a proxy war involving Iran.

“The Obama administration does not see that as wise, and is understandably fearful of a Sunni fundamentalist stage emerging in Syria should Assad fall,” Hibbard said.

Additionally, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed a desire for the United States to lead a military attack on Iran.

“The Netanyahu government is not in a position to attack Iran militarily, but would like the U.S. to do so,” Hibbard said. “However, neither the Bush Administration (post-2006) or the Obama administration see that as serving American interests.”

Israel fears that Iran’s nuclear program is dangerous and could be used to develop nuclear weapons. However, Iran says their nuclear development is meant for peaceful practices only, citing medical treatment and power creation.

The United States has had a strained relationship with both Saudi Arabia and Israel in the last several years, and the negotiations with Iran are only another contributing factor.  However, Professor Hibbard explained that the United States will continue to have a close working relationship with Israel and Saudi Arabia due to shared interests in oil and stability in the region.

Both the United States and Iran have made their commitment to the negotiations clear. Velayati’s wish to resume discussions according to the Geneva plan offer hope into Iran’s intentions to finally reach a resolution. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has the final say on the nation’s matters, including the nuclear program, but Velayati feels the country is ready for a conclusive deal.

According to AP, the deputy foreign minister of Iran, Abbas Araghchi, met with Catherine Ashton, foreign policy chief of the European Union, and said afterwards that talks would resume soon.

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