A historic agreement has been made between Iran, US, UK, Russia, China, France and Germany – and the EU’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, which brings an end to a 12 year standoff and could mark a new era for relations between Iran and the West.
The deal comes after 17 days of almost constant negotiations and ended in the early hours of Tuesday morning. Negotiations have been on and off since 2006.
— Marie Harf (@marieharf) July 14, 2015
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that the deal opens a ‘new chapter’ in Iran’s relations with the world. President Obama proclaimed that the deal ‘offers an opportunity to move in a new direction…We should seize it.’
“History shows that America must lead not just with our might but with our principles,” Obama said in a televised address. “Today’s announcement marks one more chapter in our pursuit of a safer, more helpful and more hopeful world.”
The deal is triumph for both Obama, who promised to mend relations with historic enemies, and Rouhani, who promised to end the isolation Iran has felt for decades. While the deal is good for both countries, there will be skepticism and opposition from hard liners in both countries.
“Today is the end to acts of tyranny against our nation and the start of cooperation with the world,” Rouhani said in a televised address. “This is a reciprocal deal. If they stick to it, we will. The Iranian nation has always observed its promises and treaties.”
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran said they had signed a roadmap to resolve any outstanding questions.
IAEA head Yukiya Amano told reporters in Vienna that his organisation had signed a roadmap “for the clarification of past and present outstanding issues regarding Iran’s nuclear programme”.
He also called the agreement a “significant step forward” that would allow the agency to “make an assessment of issues relating to possible military dimensions to Iran’s nuclear programme by the end of 2015″.
— IAEA (@iaeaorg) July 14, 2015
The world powers had wanted Iran to significantly scale down its nuclear enrichment programme, which it had worried Iran could use to develop nuclear weapons. Iran has always claimed that the nuclear programme was peaceful and was only for the purpose of providing power.
In return for Iran reducing the nuclear programme, crippling sanctions will be lifted, allowing the economy to recover and for international trade to thrive. The sanction imposed have affected every part of life for Iranians, from access to jobs, medications and software to being able to buy cheaper iPhones and fruit. Businesses will be able to openly and easily trade, and financial pressures will lessen for families.
The Iranian government have also accepted a ‘snapback’ mechanism, which allows some sanctions to be reinstated in 65 days if Iran violated the deal. A U.N. weapons embargo will remain in place for five years and the ban on buying missile technology remains for eight years.
While many have hailed the agreement as a good thing, some states, such as Israel have denounced the deal as a ‘historic mistake’, while Russian President Vladimir Putin said that there was a global ‘huge sigh of relief’.
— BBC Trending (@BBCtrending) July 14, 2015
Iran’s Foreign Minister Zarif called the deal a “win-win” solution that could end “an unnecessary crisis and open new horizons for dealing with serious problems that affect our international community.”
“I believe this is a historic moment. We are reaching an agreement that is not perfect for everybody but it is what we could accomplish and it is an important achievement for all of us.”