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    Iran’s foreign minister on Thursday urged US President-elect Joe Biden to abandon Washington’s “rogue” behaviour and lift crippling sanctions on his country, rejecting talk of renegotiating the 2015 nuclear deal. Mohammad Javad Zarif said that when President Donald Trump left the landmark agreement, the United States had breached a UN Security Council resolution endorsing it. “The US has been in grave breach of that resolution because the Trump administration has been a rogue regime,” Zarif said in an online interview held as part of the Mediterranean Dialogues event, hosted by Italy. “Now if President-elect Biden wants to continue to be a rogue regime, then he can continue to be asking for negotiations to implement its commitments,” he added. “The United States must stop, the United States must cease its violations of international law. It doesn’t require any negotiations.” Decades old US-Iranian tensions escalated after Trump unilaterally withdrew from the nuclear...
    By Humeyra Pamuk and Matt Spetalnick WASHINGTON, Dec 3 (Reuters) – Iran is unlikely to retaliate over the assassination of a prominent nuclear scientist before the inauguration of Joe Biden in case it jeopardizes any future sanctions relief, the top U.S. envoy on Iran told Reuters on Thursday. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who had little public profile in Iran but had been named by Israel as a prime player in what it says is Iran’s nuclear weapons quest, was killed on Friday when he was ambushed on a highway near Tehran and his car sprayed with bullets. Elliott Abrams, Washington’s special representative on Iran and Venezuela, said in an interview that Tehran was “desperately” in need of sanctions relief from the United States and that would be a key calculation in their decision-making as President-elect Biden takes over from President Donald Trump on Jan. 20. “If they want sanctions relief, they know...
    Tehran, Iran (CNN)Iran's parliament has passed a bill that would boost uranium enrichment to pre-2015 levels and block nuclear inspections if sanctions are not lifted, in the wake of the assassination of a top nuclear scientist. Iran's more moderate president, Hassan Rouhani, whose government signed the landmark 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, had opposed the bill, arguing that it would undermine diplomacy. Iran's government has repeatedly called on the US to restore the agreement which President Donald Trump withdrew from in 2018. President-elect Joe Biden has promised to return to the pact. US official says Israel was behind assassination of Iranian scientistThe "Strategic Action Plan to Counter Sanctions" parliamentary bill demands that European parties to the deal lift sanctions on the country's oil and banking sectors by February, threatening to suspend nuclear inspections by watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency and withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, according to...
    By Crispian Balmer ROME (Reuters) - Iran will fully comply with a 2015 deal aimed at preventing it from developing nuclear weapons if both the United States and Europe honour their original commitments, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Thursday. U.S. President Donald Trump quit the pact in 2018, saying it did not do enough to curb Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs or its militant influence in the Middle East. However, president-elect Joe Biden has said he will rejoin it if Tehran first resumes strict compliance. He has also said he would work with allies "to strengthen and extend it". Addressing a Rome conference via video-link, Zarif said the so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) could not be renegotiated but it could be resurrected. "The United States has commitments. It is not in a position to set conditions," he said. Iran's Guardian Council watchdog body approved...
    There is little consensus about what the killing of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh means for the future. Believed to be the supervisor of Iran’s nuclear weapons research program, Fakhrizadeh was killed in a barrage of bullets and explosions last week. A good outcome from the death of a bad man would be to keep American policies headed in the same direction. Unfortunately, many on the left still want to return to the Obama administration’s failed “love the hate out of them” approach to Iran, a terror-sponsoring state that aspires to become a nuclear power. The conventional wisdom holds that Israel carried out the attack against Fakhrizadeh. That’s understandable, because between 2010 and 2012 four Iranian nuclear scientists were killed in attacks also ascribed to Israel. WHERE DOES IRAN'S NUCLEAR WEAPONS PROGRAM STAND NOW? Abu Muhammad al-Masri, Al Qaeda’s second-in-command, was gunned down recently on the streets of Tehran —...
    Iran's legislative watchdog council approved a bill on Wednesday that would ramp up the country's uranium enrichment to near weapons-grade levels and suspend access to any of its nuclear facilities if U.S. sanctions against the country are not lifted early in President-elect Joe Biden's first term. The bill, passed by the Iran Parliament on Tuesday, orders Iran's atomic energy agency to return uranium enrichment to levels not seen in the country since the United States and Iran entered the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2015, commonly referred to as the Iran nuclear deal, if the incoming Biden administration and European powers fail to lift sanctions by early February, according to the New York Times. The Guardian Council is "the most influential body in Iran," according to the BBC, and approves any legislation passed by the Iran Parliament. The council comprises six theologians who ensure that new laws are...
    More On: joe biden Joe Biden brushes off criticism of OMB pick Neera Tanden Nikki Haley says Biden OMB pick is ‘deeply concerning’ Joe Biden looks bent on restoring chaos at the border Biden will start crisis if he rejects Trump border policies that worked President-elect Biden plans to re-enter the Iran nuclear deal on the condition that the Middle Eastern country agreed to “strict compliance” measures, he has revealed. The incoming commander-in-chief made the admission during a wide-ranging interview with New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, who pressed Biden on where he stood with regard to Iran. Asked if he still stood by a September op-ed he authored where he argued in favor of rejoining the Obama-era accords “as a starting point for follow-on negotiations,” Biden said he did. “It’s going to be hard, but yeah,” he remarked. At the time, he had argued that, “if Iran returns...
    President-elect Joe Biden has signaled he will return the United States to a nuclear accord with Iran before quickly launching talks on other concerns, reviving diplomacy to ease soaring tensions. In his most substantive remarks on Iran since his victory, Biden told The New York Times that he still backed the 2015 deal negotiated under Barack Obama from which defeated president Donald Trump withdrew. Biden told the newspaper’s columnist Thomas Friedman that “it’s going to be hard” but that if Iran returned to compliance, the United States would rejoin the agreement. The top US priority should be to prevent an Iranian nuclear weapon, Biden said, explaining, “The last goddamn thing we need in that part of the world is a buildup of nuclear capability.” After re-entering the agreement, “in consultation with our allies and partners, we’re going to engage in negotiations and follow-on agreements to tighten and lengthen Iran’s nuclear...
    Joe Biden excluded Israel on Wednesday from the list of countries he said needed to be included in negotiations with Iran toward a new nuclear agreement. In an interview with Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, Biden said that he wanted to resume talks with Iran in the hope of returning to a nuclear agreement that constrains the regime’s ability to develop nuclear weapons. He added that he wanted to expand the number of countries at the negotiating table with Iran — but pointedly excluded Israel from the list: The view of Biden and his national security team is that once the deal is restored by both sides, there will have to be, in very short order, a round of negotiations to seek to lengthen the duration of the restrictions on Iran’s production of fissile material that could be used to make a bomb — originally 15 years — as...
    As the dust settles following the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh last Friday, the international community is once again forced to confront the troubling question of where does Iran currently stand when it comes to nuclear ambitions. After its program was officially shuttered due to international pressure in 2003, Tehran has repeatedly denied that its atomic aspirations have been covertly revived. The country's entrance into the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – the controversial so-called Iran nuclear deal – was centered on the premise it would continue halting its program for another 15 years. According to the most recent Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) analysis of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Iran Verification and Monitoring Report, released in November, Iran's low enriched uranium (LEU) stock now exceeds by 12-fold the limit set in the JCPOA. "As of November 2, 2020, Iran had a stockpile of about 3613.8 kilograms (kg) of LEU (hexafluoride mass),...
    Reuters December 2, 2020 0 Comments Joe Biden will not immediately cancel the Phase 1 trade agreement that President Donald Trump struck with China nor take steps to remove tariffs on Chinese exports, the New York Times on Wednesday quoted the U.S. president-elect as saying. In an interview with Times columnist Thomas Friedman that gave clues to how the new administration will proceed on foreign policy, Biden said his top priority was getting a generous stimulus package through Congress, even before he takes power. This week Reuters reported that Trump was eyeing more steps to box Biden into hardline positions on Beijing, backed by the anti-China sentiment in Congress that has often unnerved financial markets in the past four years. “I’m not going to make any immediate moves, and the same applies to the tariffs. I’m not going to prejudice my options,” President-elect Biden told Friedman. Biden said he...
    TEHRAN – Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday rejected a bill approved by parliament that would have suspended U.N. inspections and boosted uranium enrichment, saying it was “harmful” to diplomatic efforts aimed at restoring the 2015 nuclear deal and easing U.S. sanctions. The tug-of-war over the bill, which gained momentum after the killing of a prominent Iranian nuclear scientist last month, reflects the rivalry between Rouhani, a relative moderate, and hard-line lawmakers who dominate parliament and favor a more confrontational approach to the West. The bill would have suspended U.N. inspections and required the government to resume enriching uranium to 20% if European nations fail to provide relief from crippling U.S. sanctions on the country's oil and banking sectors. That level falls short of the threshold needed for nuclear weapons but is higher than that required for civilian purposes. Speaking at a Cabinet meeting, Rouhani said his administration, “does not...
    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday rejected a bill approved by parliament that would have suspended U.N. inspections and boosted uranium enrichment, saying it was “harmful” to diplomatic efforts aimed at restoring the 2015 nuclear deal and easing U.S. sanctions. The tug-of-war over the bill, which gained momentum after the killing of a prominent Iranian nuclear scientist last month, reflects the rivalry between Rouhani, a relative moderate, and hard-line lawmakers who dominate parliament and favor a more confrontational approach to the West. The bill would have suspended U.N. inspections and required the government to resume enriching uranium to 20% if European nations fail to provide relief from crippling U.S. sanctions on the country's oil and banking sectors. That level falls short of the threshold needed for nuclear weapons but is higher than that required for civilian purposes. Speaking at a Cabinet meeting, Rouhani said his administration,...
    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday rejected a bill approved by parliament that would have suspended U.N. inspections and boosted uranium enrichment, saying it was “harmful” to diplomatic efforts aimed at restoring the 2015 nuclear deal and easing U.S. sanctions. The tug-of-war over the bill, which gained momentum after the killing of a prominent Iranian nuclear scientist last month, reflects the rivalry between Rouhani, a relative moderate, and hard-line lawmakers who dominate parliament and favor a more confrontational approach to the West. The bill would have suspended U.N. inspections and required the government to resume enriching uranium to 20% if European nations fail to provide relief from crippling U.S. sanctions on the country’s oil and banking sectors. That level falls short of the threshold needed for nuclear weapons but is higher than that required for civilian purposes. Speaking at a Cabinet meeting, Rouhani said his administration,...
    (CNN)President-elect Joe Biden's hopes of reviving the Iran nuclear deal may already be coming undone.The assassination last week of nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, apparently in a covert operation featuring a remote-controlled machine gun --was a new blow to Iranian pride following the US killing of top Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in a January airstrike. Both incidents could wreck prospects for diplomacy.Tehran's clerical leaders now have a conundrum. Do they respond aggressively -- against the country accused of perpetrating the attack, Israel -- and risk a damaging escalation with the United States? Or do they absorb the politically embarrassing blow and hope dialogue with Biden could ease Trump administration sanctions that have strangled their economy?President Donald Trump would likely respond to Iranian military action. And a conflict would not just hand Biden an immediate crisis, it also would probably kill off any talks between Washington and Tehran. That is one reason...
    In an appearance on Fox News Channel’s “The Story” on Monday, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) warned against the United States rejoining the Iran nuclear deal canceled by President Donald Trump under a potential future Biden administration. The Arkansas Republican lawmaker said the act would be shortsighted and dangerous. “I just can’t imagine that the Biden administration, for instance, would lift sanctions against the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps,” he said. “The Trump administration imposed those sanctions. The IRGC is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. And I’m sure that the Iranian leadership would demand that those sanctions be lifted. The IRGC has its tentacles throughout the Iranian economy. That’s why so many ayatollahs are also multi-billionaires.” “Is the Biden administration really going to lift sanctions against the shock troops of Iran’s terror regime?” Cotton continued. “Are they really going to send hundreds of billions...
    DUBAI (Reuters) - A draft bill requiring Iran's government to pursue uranium enrichment of 20%, and to disregard other restraints put on its nuclear programme by an accord reached with foreign powers in 2015 cleared its first hurdle in parliament on Tuesday. The legislation was proposed in the wake of the assassination of a top nuclear scientist on Friday, and the hardline-dominated parliament cleared the draft on the first reading in a session broadcast live on state radio. The bill still has to be approved in a second reading and endorsed by a clerical body before it becomes law.A senior Iranian official said on Monday an opposition group was suspected of complicity with Israel in the killing of nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, an attack that has raised the prospect of heightened tensions between Tehran and its longtime enemy. Parliament has often demanded without much success a hardening of Iran's position...
    U.S. President-elect Joe Biden speaks to the media after receiving a briefing from the transition COVID-19 advisory board on November 09, 2020 at the Queen Theater in Wilmington, Delaware. Mr. Biden spoke about how his administration would respond to the coronavirus pandemic. Joe Raedle/Getty Images The assassination of a top Iranian nuclear scientist was designed to derail President-elect Joe Biden’s plans to return to the 2015 nuclear deal, according to experts and former US diplomats. One top expert on the Middle East told Insider that the assassination “fits with Israeli long-standing policy of targeting Iranian nuclear scientists.” A former US diplomat told Insider there are “are ample reasons to suspect US involvement” in last Friday’s attack, citing President Donald Trump’s opposition to the Iran nuclear deal. Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories. The assassination of an Iranian nuclear...
    The Biden administration will "try to revitalize" the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, former Deputy National Security Adviser K.T. McFarland predicted Monday. “The Iran nuclear deal, which was the Obama administration’s signature foreign policy achievement, really was kind of all smoke and mirrors," McFarland told "America's Newsroom." "There was never anything to it. It didn’t stop Iran’s nuclear program, it delayed it a few years." McFarland added that rather than “stopping” Iran’s “terrorism program,” the agreement “endorsed and supported it.” “Where are we going to be now?" she asked rhetoricall. "Let’s say the Biden administration comes in and, as they promised, they want to revitalize it, revive it, get back into it, and, so, what will happen is Iran will continue its nuclear program.” KILLING OF IRANIAN NUCLEAR SCIENTIST HAS REGION, WORLD LEADERS ON EDGE OVER POTENTIAL RETALIATION FROM IRAN Meanwhile, top Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was laid to rest Monday, days after he was killed in a daytime military-like ambush in Tehran....
    (Repeats Nov. 28 story with no changes) * U.N. agency long outlined Fakhrizadeh’s weapons work * 2015 nuclear pact drew a line under Iran’s past * Iran stuck to deal until Washington’s withdrawal * Deal is fraying, uranium stock rising, breaches growing By Francois Murphy and Parisa Hafezi VIENNA/DUBAI, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who was killed on Friday, led a life of such secrecy that even his age was under wraps but much about the clandestine nuclear weapons programme he is believed to have run has long been known. The U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said it suspected Fakhrizadeh oversaw secret work to fit a warhead on a ballistic missile, test high explosives suitable for a nuclear weapon and process uranium. Iran insists it never had such a programme nor any ambition to make a bomb. The IAEA and U.S. intelligence agencies believe it had...
    Retired Navy Adm. Mike Mullen told NBC News’ Chuck Todd on Sunday’s edition of Meet the Press that the assassination of top Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakrizadeh will make it “much more challenging” for President-elect Joe Biden to re-enter or renegotiate a nuclear deal with Tehran once he’s in office. The task already appeared difficult, especially with Iran’s own presidential elections looming, but Fakrizadeh “was at the heart of the Iranian nuclear program and has been for years,” Mullen said. He was “not only the brains, but also the passion behind it, so his assassination is really a significant event.” WATCH: Admiral Mike Mullen says the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, is “a significant event.” #MTP #IfItsSunday Mullen: Fakhrizadeh was “the real center of gravity, if you will, for [the Iranian nuclear] program.” pic.twitter.com/OkyB0hZClT — Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) November 29, 2020 It’s unclear who was behind the...
    Protesters gather in Tehran on Saturday, Nov. 28, 2020, a day after the killing of the Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. (Arash Khamooshi/The New York Times) WASHINGTON — The assassination of the scientist who led Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon for the past two decades threatens to cripple President-elect Joe Biden’s effort to revive the Iran nuclear deal before he can even begin his diplomacy with Tehran. And that may well have been a main goal of the operation. Intelligence officials say there is little doubt that Israel was behind the killing — it had all the hallmarks of a precisely timed operation by Mossad, the country’s spy agency. And the Israelis have done nothing to dispel that view. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has long identified Iran as an existential threat and named the assassinated scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, as national enemy No. 1, capable of building a weapon...
    Former Navy Admiral Bill McRaven said on Sunday that the world was waiting for “a Biden administration to come in,” when speaking about the role of the U.S. on the international stage as President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenPennsylvania Supreme Court strikes down GOP bid to stop election certification Biden looks to career officials to restore trust, morale in government agencies Biden transition adds new members to coronavirus task force MORE prepares to assume power. McRaven appeared on ABC’s “This Week,” where he spoke on the recent assassination of an Iranian nuclear scientist and what it meant for Biden’s administration amid Biden's cabinet announcements including the Secretary of State and heads of intelligence. On Friday, Iran’s state media announced that Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a nuclear scientist believed to have led its military’s nuclear program, was assassinated. Iranian officials pointed fingers at Israel for the attack and have promised retaliation. “The Iranians don't want...
    DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran will give a "calculated and decisive" response to the killing of its top nuclear scientist, said a top adviser to Iran's supreme leader, while a hardline newspaper suggested Tehran's revenge should include striking the Israeli city of Haifa. "Undoubtedly, Iran will give a calculated and decisive answer to the criminals who took Martyr Mohsen Fakhrizadeh from the Iranian nation," Kamal Kharrazi, who is also head of Iran’s Strategic Council on Foreign Relations, said in a statement. Fakhrizadeh, long suspected by Western and Israeli government of masterminding a secret nuclear weapons program, was ambushed on a highway near Tehran on Friday and gunned down in his car. Iran's clerical and military rulers have blamed the Islamic Republic's longtime enemy, Israel, for the killing. Iran has in the past accused Israel of killing several Iranian nuclear scientists since 2010. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office has declined to comment...
    On Saturday’s broadcast of the Fox News Channel’s “America’s News HQ,” Rep. John Garamendi (D-CA) stated that the assassination of Iranian nuclear program scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh will make rejoining the Iran nuclear deal “somewhat more difficult, perhaps impossible.” Garamendi said, [relevant remarks begin around 3:15] “Iran will do something. Exactly what, we do not know. But we must be prepared for that. In any case, we do know that the question arises as to what the Biden team will be doing. Does this make it impossible or difficult to put this Iran nuclear deal back in the bottle? Can the genie be put back in? We don’t know. But, clearly, this is going to make it somewhat more difficult, perhaps impossible.” Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett
    Students of Iran's Basij paramilitary force burn U.S. and Israeli flags during a rally in front of the foreign ministry in Tehran, on Saturday to protest the assassination of prominent nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says retaliation will come at the "right time." In an August interview, Jake Sullivan—deputy chief of staff and director of policy planning for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and an aide to then-Vice President Joe Biden who is now Biden’s pick for his national security adviser—hinted that rejoining the Iran Nuclear Agreement would be a priority for the new administration’s first 100 days in office. The assassination Friday of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a leading Iranian nuclear scientist, could make that difficult. David Sanger at The New York Times writes that may well have been the point of the carefully planned killing. And Trita Parsi, an Iranian expatriate who founded the National Iranian American Council and co-founded the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, of...
    Saturday on FNC’s “Fox & Friends,” Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) weighed in on the reaction from those on the left, including former CIA Director John Brennen, decrying the death of Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. The New York State congressman called it a preference of a position of weakness for those like Brennan. “Yeah, I didn’t lose any sleep last night over this,” he said. “Apparently, John Brennan and some people on the other side did. And I think it’s because there is a desire by about half of our country to approach Iran are from a position of strength. Others prefer to approach from a position of weakness with an apologetic attitude for American greatness. And we saw it in the negotiation of the nuclear deal back in 2015. This person is considered the father of Iran’s nuclear program, and when red lines were being crossed, and those on the...
    (CNN)Here's a look at Iran's nuclear capabilities.Since 2003, worldwide concern over Iran's nuclear program has increased as Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) spar over investigation and details of Iran's program. Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has repeatedly denied Iran is building a bomb and says weapons of mass destruction are forbidden under Islam.Timeline 1957 - The United States signs a civil nuclear cooperation agreement with Iran.1958 - Iran joins the IAEA.Read More1967 - The Tehran Nuclear Research Center, which includes a small reactor supplied by the United States, opens.1968 - Iran signs the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.Mid-1970s - With US backing, Iran begins developing a nuclear power program.1979 - Iran's Islamic revolution ends Western involvement in the country's nuclear program.December 1984 - With the aid of China, Iran opens a nuclear research center in Isfahan.February 23, 1998 - The United States announces concerns that Iran's nuclear energy program...
    By Francois Murphy VIENNA (Reuters) - A 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers is being eroded and efforts to revive the pact face a new challenge with the killing of Tehran's top nuclear scientist. The accord's restrictions on Iran's atomic work had one objective: to extend the "breakout time" for Tehran to produce enough fissile material for a bomb, if it decided to make one, to at least a year from about two to three months. Iran maintains that it has never sought nuclear weapons and never would. It says its nuclear work only has civilian aims. Tehran began breaching the deal's curbs last year in a step-by-step response to President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the deal in May 2018 and the reimposition of U.S. sanctions. This has shortened the breakout time but reports by the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which polices the deal, indicate that...
    By Francois Murphy VIENNA, Nov 28 (Reuters) – A 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers is being eroded and efforts to revive the pact face a new challenge with the killing of Tehran’s top nuclear scientist. The accord’s restrictions on Iran’s atomic work had one objective: to extend the “breakout time” for Tehran to produce enough fissile material for a bomb, if it decided to make one, to at least a year from about two to three months. Iran maintains that it has never sought nuclear weapons and never would. It says its nuclear work only has civilian aims. Tehran began breaching the deal’s curbs last year in a step-by-step response to President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the deal in May 2018 and the reimposition of U.S. sanctions. This has shortened the breakout time but reports by the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which polices the deal,...
    By Francois Murphy and Parisa Hafezi VIENNA/DUBAI (Reuters) - Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who was killed on Friday, led a life of such secrecy that even his age was under wraps but much about the clandestine nuclear weapons programme he is believed to have run has long been known. The U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said it suspected Fakhrizadeh oversaw secret work to fit a warhead on a ballistic missile, test high explosives suitable for a nuclear weapon and process uranium. Iran insists it never had such a programme nor any ambition to make a bomb. The IAEA and U.S. intelligence agencies believe it had a coordinated weapons programme that it halted in 2003. Western suspicions that Iran would resume that programme were at the heart of the deal struck in a 2015 deal under which Tehran agreed with world powers to curb its nuclear work in return for...
    * U.N. agency long outlined Fakhrizadeh’s weapons work * 2015 nuclear pact drew a line under Iran’s past * Iran stuck to deal until Washington’s withdrawal * Deal is fraying, uranium stock rising, breaches growing By Francois Murphy and Parisa Hafezi VIENNA/DUBAI, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, who was killed on Friday, led a life of such secrecy that even his age was under wraps but much about the clandestine nuclear weapons programme he is believed to have run has long been known. The U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said it suspected Fakhrizadeh oversaw secret work to fit a warhead on a ballistic missile, test high explosives suitable for a nuclear weapon and process uranium. Iran insists it never had such a programme nor any ambition to make a bomb. The IAEA and U.S. intelligence agencies believe it had a coordinated weapons programme that it halted...
    Iran's supreme leader vowed the nation will have its revenge on those responsible for the killing of a prominent nuclear scientist. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a statement that Iran would seek the "definitive punishment of the perpetrators and those who ordered it" after Mohsen Fakhrizadeh was killed on Friday in what appears to have been a coordinated attack. Iran's Defense Ministry claimed he was ambushed in his car outside of the nation's capital. The scientist has been widely regarded as the architect of the country's secret military nuclear program, which was halted in 2003. Since then, Iran has repeatedly claimed that its efforts in nuclear development have nothing to do with developing a bomb and are instead focused on energy. "We will respond to the assassination of Martyr Fakhrizadeh in a proper time," said Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, blaming Israel for Fakhrizadeh's death. "The Iranian nation...
    Officials on Friday confirmed Iranian allegations that Israel was behind the killing of the Islamic republic’s top nuclear scientist, according to a report. An unidentified American official and two unidentified intelligence officials told the New York Times that Israel was responsible for the slaying of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh during an ambush near the capital of Tehran. It’s unclear whether the US knew about the attack ahead of time, but American and Israeli officials have long shared intelligence about Iran, the Times said. Meanwhile, a former high-ranking CIA official told the Washington Post that Fakhrizadeh’s slaying appeared to be linked to President Trump’s electoral loss to President-elect Joe Biden, who has pledged to rejoin the 2015 Iran nuclear deal on the condition that “Iran returns to strict compliance.” “The operation reflects thinking of those in the [Israeli] government – and/or the Trump administration – who see these next few weeks as...
    Friday’s apparent assassination of the founder of Iran’s nuclear weapons program wasn’t just a setback for the regime’s nuclear ambitions — it was a timely reminder that the Iran nuclear deal was built on Iranian deception from the start. In May 2018, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dramatically revealed to the world the existence of a secret Iranian nuclear archive — a curation of Iran’s past work on nuclear weapons, which had never been disclosed to international inspectors or nuclear deal negotiators. The archive contained a treasure trove of documents and computer files, including information on the organizational structure of Iran’s nuclear work. Sitting at the top of Iran’s nuclear food chain was Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. “Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh,” Netanyahu said at the time. For those who forgot, a brief refresher. Fakhrizadeh was the founder of Iran’s nuclear weapons program, known as the Amad Plan — charged with building...
    Friday’s apparent assassination of the founder of Iran’s nuclear weapons program wasn’t just a setback for the regime’s nuclear ambitions — it was a timely reminder that the Iran nuclear deal was built on Iranian deception from the start. In May 2018, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dramatically revealed to the world the existence of a secret Iranian nuclear archive — a curation of Iran’s past work on nuclear weapons, which had never been disclosed to international inspectors or nuclear deal negotiators. The archive contained a treasure trove of documents and computer files, including information on the organizational structure of Iran’s nuclear work. Sitting at the top of Iran’s nuclear food chain was Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. “Remember that name, Fakhrizadeh,” Netanyahu said at the time. For those who forgot, a brief refresher. Fakhrizadeh was the founder of Iran’s nuclear weapons program, known as the Amad Plan — charged with building some...
    Officials on Friday confirmed Iranian allegations that Israel was behind the killing of the Islamic republic’s top nuclear scientist, according to a report. An unidentified American official and two unidentified intelligence officials told the New York Times that Israel was responsible for the slaying of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh during an ambush near the capital of Tehran. It’s unclear whether the US knew about the attack ahead of time, but American and Israeli officials have long shared intelligence about Iran, the Times said. Meanwhile, a former high-ranking CIA official told the Washington Post that Fakhrizadeh’s slaying appeared to be linked to President Trump’s electoral loss to President-elect Joe Biden, who has pledged to rejoin the 2015 Iran nuclear deal on the condition that “Iran returns to strict compliance.” see also Irans top nuclear scientist assassinated in ambush, reports say Mohsen Fakhrizadeh -- who led Irans so-called “Amad,” or “Hope”... “The...
    The Daily Beast What is Putin’s Endgame With Americans Detained in Russia? One of the first challenges Joe Biden will face as president is how to deal with Vladimir Putin, leader of the country that Biden has labelled the biggest threat to the United States. In contrast to the impetuous and inconsistent Donald Trump, Putin is generally seen as a resolute leader, who unflaggingly pursues his country’s foreign policy goals, however malign. But the cases of three Americans who are currently detained in Russia belie this image of Putin, portraying instead a leader who is dysfunctionally beholden to the interests of his security services and the corrupt clans who form his power base.The case of American investor Michael Calvey, which should be decided by a Moscow court within the next few weeks, offers a particularly striking example of how Putin has allowed a corrupted legal and financial system to undermine...
    This handout image supplied by the IIPA (Iran International Photo Agency) shows a view of the reactor building at the Russian-built Bushehr nuclear power plant as the first fuel is loaded, on August 21, 2010 in Bushehr, southern Iran.Getty Images WASHINGTON — A top Iranian nuclear scientist has been assassinated, according to Iran's Foreign Ministry. Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, dubbed the "father of the Iranian bomb," died from his injuries after armed assassins fired upon his car, according to reports by Iranian media that have not been independently confirmed by NBC News. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif condemned the killing on Twitter. The Pentagon declined to comment. The Department of State and the National Security Council did not immediately respond to CNBC's request for comment. President Donald Trump did however retweet a news article and commentary about Fakhrizadeh's death. Tensions between Washington and Tehran have mounted following President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the landmark Iran nuclear...
    On Wednesday’s “Hugh Hewitt Show,” National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien stated that rejoining the Iran nuclear deal would stunt the peace process between Israel and other nations. O’Brien said that one reason for the interest in Arab-Israeli peace is mutual distrust of Iran, “And so, you know, it would be a shame to see this budding peace that we’ve wanted for 70 years, since 1948 when Israel was partitioned — or Palestine was partitioned and Israel became a state, it would be a shame to see that peace process stunted because America made a misguided attempt to appease the Iranians. Look, we appeased them once and it didn’t work. After the first JCPOA was signed, Iran engaged in terrorism and proxy wars throughout the region, and they did it with the funds that were made available to them through the JCPOA.” Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett
    The Israeli military has been preparing for the possibility that President Donald Trump will order a strike on Iran before leaving office in January, a report by Axios citing senior Israeli officials said Wednesday. The officials said that while there is no specific intelligence that such an attack is imminent, Israeli leaders expect “a very sensitive period” ahead of Biden’s inauguration in January. They added that the U.S. would likely inform Israel ahead of carrying out military action against the Islamic Republic. Still, Israeli officials expressed concern that the time frame would be insufficient for the army to prepare for possible retaliations targeting Israel. If a strike were to happen, the Israel Defense Forces would expect retaliation from Iran’s proxies in Lebanon, Gaza and Syria, according to the report. Last week, the New York Times reported reported that Trump had asked top advisers about the possibility of striking Iranian nuclear sites, including Iran’s uranium...
    WILMINGTON, DE - NOVEMBER 19: President-elect Joe Biden answers a reporter question after he delivered remarks at the Queen in Wilmington, Delaware on Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. (Photo by Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images)The Washington Post | The Washington Post | Getty Images DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — President-elect Joe Biden made it clear during his campaign that his administration would favor a return to the 2015 Iranian nuclear deal, reversing a cornerstone of President Donald Trump's foreign policy in the Middle East.  But after three years of "maximum pressure" under Trump's sanctions and dramatically deepened distrust between Tehran and Washington, that may be a lot further off than it sounds. "No matter how desperate a Biden administration may be for a deal, it will be Iran's response that will matter more," Behnam Ben Taleblu, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told CNBC shortly...
    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s president reiterated his hope Wednesday that U.S. President-elect Joe Biden would return America’s Iran policy to where he left things as vice president four years ago, state TV reported, rejoining Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers. Hassan Rouhani said that if Iran and the U.S. could find a path back to “the situation on Jan 20, 2017,” President Donald Trump’s inauguration day, “it could be a huge solution for many issues and problems.” Under Trump, tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated, pushing the two sides to the brink of war earlier this year. One of Trump’s signature foreign policy moves was unilaterally withdrawing from the nuclear accord in 2018, which had limited Iran’s uranium enrichment in exchange for lifting economic sanctions. Trump has since piled punishing sanctions on Iran that have devastated the country’s economy and crashed its currency. Rouhani called...
    A spokesman for the Iranian government said on Tuesday that foreign companies are already inquiring about the possibility of doing business in Iran again after the Biden administration returns to the nuclear deal and lifts sanctions imposed by President Donald Trump. “Recently, contacts about opening offices and the presence of foreign companies in Iran have increased,” government spokesman Ali Rabiei said at a news conference, as quoted by Reuters on Tuesday. “Certainly, with the … lifting of the oppressive sanctions and the absence of Trump, the presence of foreign companies and a willingness to invest in Iran will increase,” Rabiei said. Reuters quoted some skepticism about these claims from a European diplomat who said that even if sanctions are lifted, foreign corporations will remain uneasy about doing business in “a market with so little financial transparency.” The Trump administration took more steps to increase sanctions pressure on Iran last week,...
    MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov discussed the situations in Syria and Nagorno-Karabakh in a phone call with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif, Russia's foreign ministry said on Tuesday. The two men also discussed Moscow and Tehran's commitment to ensuring the prompt return of all participants to fully observing obligations laid out in the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). U.S. President-elect Joe Biden has said he will take the United States back into the 2015 deal. (Reporting by Polina Devitt; Writing by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Gareth Jones) Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters. Tags: Iran, Armenia, Russia, United States, Middle East, Europe
    Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United Nations believes President-elect Joe Biden won’t re-enter the Iran nuclear deal, saying nobody would be “naive enough” to rejoin an accord that has proven to be an abject failure. Abdallah Al-Mouallimi told Fox News that he doubted President-elect Joe Biden’s administration would pivot from President Trump’s hardline in dealing with the Islamic Republic’s nuclear ambitions. “No, I think that the Iran nuclear deal has proven its failure to the entire world. And I don’t think that anybody is going to be naive enough to go back to the same deal,” Al-Mouallimi said on “America’s News HQ” on Sunday. “If there is a new deal in which Saudi Arabia is involved in the discussion and which covers the shortcomings of the previous deal, such as Iran’s hydromantic behavior in the region and the issue of the missiles and the supply of weapons to rebel...
    Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United Nations believes President-elect Joe Biden won’t re-enter the Iran nuclear deal, saying nobody would be “naive enough” to rejoin an accord that has proven to be an abject failure. Abdallah Al-Mouallimi told Fox News that he doubted President-elect Joe Biden’s administration would pivot from President Trump’s hardline in dealing with the Islamic Republic’s nuclear ambitions. “No, I think that the Iran nuclear deal has proven its failure to the entire world. And I don’t think that anybody is going to be naive enough to go back to the same deal,” Al-Mouallimi said on “America’s News HQ” on Sunday. “If there is a new deal in which Saudi Arabia is involved in the discussion and which covers the shortcomings of the previous deal, such as Iran’s hydromantic behavior in the region and the issue of the missiles and the supply of weapons to rebel groups...
    BERLIN (Reuters) - German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas is meeting his French and British counterparts in Berlin on Monday for talks focussing on the nuclear deal with Iran, a German foreign office spokeswoman said, adding Iran was violating the agreement systematically. "Together with our partners, we strongly call on Iran to stop violating the deal and return to fulfilling all its nuclear obligations completely," the spokeswoman said. (This story has been refiled to add word "deal" to headline) (Reporting by Sabine Siebold; Editing by Riham Alkousaa) Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters. Tags: Iran, International Atomic Energy Agency, France, Middle East, United Kingdom, Europe, Germany
    Saudi Arabia’s U.N. envoy on Sunday dismissed the idea that the United States would re-enter the Iran nuclear deal under a Joe Biden administration, saying nobody would be “naive enough” to go back to a deal that has “proven its failure to the entire world.” Abdallah Al-Mouallimi made the comments during an appearance on Fox News’ ‘America’s News HQ’ with host Leland Vittert. Vittert said U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East shifted dramatically under President Trump’s administration, most notably with the May 2018 withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal. FILE: President-elect Joe Biden speaks at The Queen theater in Wilmington, Del.  (AP) The deal – officially the “Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action – was a historic agreement reached by Iran and several world powers, including the U.S., in 2015, under Barack Obama’s presidency. It was made, in part, to reduce Iran’s ability to produce two components...
    JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in an apparent message to U.S. President-elect Joe Biden, said on Sunday there should be no return to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal abandoned by President Donald Trump. Biden, who takes office on Jan. 20, has said he would rejoin the accord if Tehran first resumed strict compliance, and would work with allies "to strengthen and extend it, while more effectively pushing back against Iran's other destabilising activities". The agreement, which world powers reached with Iran, sought to limit Tehran's nuclear programme to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons in return for the easing of economic sanctions. But the deal, abandoned by Trump in 2018, did not restrict Iran's ballistic missile programme nor its support for militia in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen, which Washington sees as destabilising to the Middle East. "There must be no return to the previous nuclear agreement....
    JERUSALEM, Nov 22 (Reuters) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in an apparent message to U.S. President-elect Joe Biden, said on Sunday there should be no return to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal abandoned by President Donald Trump. Biden, who takes office on Jan. 20, has said he would rejoin the accord if Tehran first resumed strict compliance, and would work with allies “to strengthen and extend it, while more effectively pushing back against Iran’s other destabilising activities”. The agreement, which world powers reached with Iran, sought to limit Tehran’s nuclear programme to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons in return for the easing of economic sanctions. But the deal, abandoned by Trump in 2018, did not restrict Iran’s ballistic missile programme nor its support for militia in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen, which Washington sees as destabilising to the Middle East. “There must be no return to the previous...
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday urged self-proclaimed president-elect Joe Biden not to rejoin the Iran nuclear deal, saying Israel would push back against American efforts to do so. “Do not return to the previous nuclear deal,” Netanyahu said at a memorial service for Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion. “We must stick to an uncompromising policy to ensure that Iran does not develop nuclear weapons,” he added. According to Netanyahu, Israel’s “categorical position against Iran’s nuclearization” as well as its opposition to the Obama-led nuclear deal was instrumental in generating a sea change among Arab countries regarding their attitudes towards Israel. Biden has called for the U.S. to revert to the nuclear accord known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between world powers and Iran. “The Iranian regime would prefer to deal with a Biden administration." https://t.co/myz7GY46IK — Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) September 13, 2020 President Donald Trump...
    Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal Bin Farhan al-Saud speaks to the media on February 21, 2020 in Berlin, Germany.Thomas Trutschel | Photothek | Getty Images Saudi Arabia says it should be a part of any potential negotiations between the incoming U.S. administration and Iran on a new nuclear deal, Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan Al-Saud told CNBC.   Saudi Arabia seeks to partner with the U.S. administration on a potential new agreement, which would not only limit Iran's nuclear activities but also seek to address its "regional malign activity," Al-Saud told CNBC's Hadley Gamble on Saturday. Such an accord could be labeled the "JCPOA++," he added. The JCPOA, or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, is a 2015 agreement between Iran and world powers which limited the country's nuclear ambitions in exchange for the lifting of sanctions. The original agreement was signed by the five permanent members of the United Nations' Security...
    President-elect Joe Biden has vowed to “make an unshakeable commitment to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon,” and U.S. officials expect he’ll be focused on easing tensions between Tehran and Washington once he’s in the Oval Office next year, NBC News reports. But some experts think he should hold out for a bit before simply rolling back sanctions and rejoining the 2015 nuclear deal that President Trump exited in 2018, prompting Iran’s decision to begin enriching its uranium again. “From my point of view it would be crazy to rejoin the deal without getting something more out of it,” David Albright, an expert on Iran’s nuclear program at the Institute for Science and International Security, told NBC News. “Whatever you think of Trump — and I didn’t like that he left the deal — he generated a tremendous amount of leverage on Iran, and not to use that just...
    WASHINGTON — President-elect Joe Biden has promised to rejoin the Iran nuclear agreement if Iran abides by the deal, but both sides will have to race against the clock and navigate a political minefield to reach that goal. With Iran due to hold elections in June, any diplomatic effort will have to move swiftly during Biden’s first few months in office, say former U.S. officials, European diplomats and regional experts. Iran’s current president, Hassan Rouhani, threw his weight behind the 2015 agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and there’s no guarantee the next Iranian president will be as open to cutting a deal. Biden and Rouhani also have to contend with fierce opponents to the agreement in Washington and Tehran, as well as in the region, and they will need to show that any concessions are met with reciprocal actions by the other side, former U.S....
    Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., laid out a scathing attack on President Trump's foreign policy Friday, arguing his Middle East agreements weren't actually "peace deals" but arms deals that should be reversed by the next administration. "[Trump] recently inked so-called 'peace deals' between the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Sudan, and Israel," Omar tweeted, referring to deals that preceded Trump earning two Nobel Peace Prize nominations. "The only problem?" she added. "They weren’t peace deals. They’re arms sales to human rights abusers, designed to empower the Gulf States and increase the risk of war with Iran." ILHAN OMAR FIRES BACK AT DEM COLLEAGUES FOR URGING MODERATION Her tweets came after The Nation published an op-ed in which she attacked Trump for working with the UAE, noting the nation has been accused of war crimes in Yemen and "has also been credibly accused of committing war crimes in Libya." She went on to slam Bahrain as a "brutal...
    Benzinga Here’s What $500 Invested In 7 Electric Vehicle Penny Stocks In March Is Worth Right Now Who would have thought 2020 would be the dawn of a new era in electric vehicle stocks. Though many of these companies have been on the market in one shape or form for years, most have traded as penny stocks. Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA), which was always the top dog in the industry, now finds itself with a number of major competitors.There’s no denying that FOMO (fear of missing out) has driven short-term trends in these lesser-known names, and those who invested early are now reaping the benefits.Before we continue, we need to acknowledge that these stocks carry huge amounts of risk. The EV stocks detailed below are all volatile like penny stocks. So if you are looking for ways to trade these names or make money with penny stocks, it’s important to...
    By Humeyra Pamuk WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Senator Chris Coons, a possible secretary of state in a Biden administration, said on Friday he would only support returning to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal if there were a path to limit Tehran's missile program and support for regional proxies. The agreement, which U.S. President Donald Trump abandoned in May 2018 and restored related U.S. sanctions, sought to limit Iran's nuclear program to prevent it from developing atomic weapons in return for the easing of economic sanctions. It did not, however, restrict Iran's ballistic missile program nor Iranian support for militias in Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen and Syria, which the United States regards as destabilizing to the Middle East and undercutting U.S. partners in the region. Asked if he would support a return to the pact, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Coons, a Delaware Democrat, told Reuters: "not without...
    President-elect Joe Biden should avoid negotiating with Iran after the Obama administration created the “terrible” Iran Nuclear Deal, former Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman said on Thursday. “I supported Joe Biden but, I must say, and I look forward to his presidency, but, I must say that I am concerned about this one area in policy toward Iran because the Iran nuclear agreement which the Obama administration negotiated, I think, was a terrible mistake,” Lieberman told FOX Business’ “Mornings with Maria.” BIDEN WON’T BE AS TOUGH ON CHINA: EX-STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIAL Lieberman said that the United States would be “much better being out of” the Iran Nuclear Deal and “putting maximum economic pressure on Iran.” “Without this, I don’t believe that the Arab countries and Israel would have had the courage to enter into these remarkable new accords: Israel and the Emirates, Bahrain, and Sudan. These are real peace agreements that...
    An adviser to Iran’s leader Thursday warned that any U.S. attack on the country would risk a “full-fledged war.” Hossein Dehghan, a defense minister under Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, told the Associated Press that while “we are not after starting a war… we are not after negotiations for the sake of negotiations either.” “A limited, tactical conflict can turn into a full-fledged war,” Dehghan said. “Definitely, the United States, the region and the world cannot stand such a comprehensive crisis.” Dehghan’s comments come after reports that President Donald Trump inquired about attacking Iran’s nuclear facilities, only to be dissuaded by members of his administration. (RELATED: Trump Vetoes Resolution Curbing His Ability To Attack Iran Without Congressional Approval) Dehghan is seen as a possible presidential candidate in 2021, when Rouhani is term-limited from running again. A self-described “nationalist,” Dehghan said that if elected, any future negotiations with the West, would not...
    Iran said Wednesday it would “automatically” return to its nuclear commitments if US President-elect Joe Biden lifts sanctions, as the outgoing administration doubled down with more pressure. Biden has promised a return to diplomacy with Iran after four hawkish years under Donald Trump, who withdrew from a denuclearisation accord and slapped sweeping sanctions. Tehran again meeting its commitments “can be done automatically and needs no conditions or even negotiations,” Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in comments published in the state-run Iran daily. Zarif described Biden as a “foreign affairs veteran” whom he has known for 30 years. Once in the White House, Biden could “lift all of these (sanctions) with three executive orders,” Zarif argued. If Biden’s administration does so, Iran’s return to nuclear commitments will be “quick”, the minister added. Washington’s return to the deal, however, could wait, Zarif added. “The next stage that will need negotiating is...
    Foreign policy experts and those close to President-elect Joe Biden believe he will move the U.S. closer to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, but that it will be no easy task. The Biden team tells Fox News that Biden’s stance on Iran is “spelled out” in a recent op-ed where he said as president he would rejoin the agreement if Iran returns to strict compliance with the nuclear deal. “First, I will make an unshakable commitment to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons,” Biden said. “Second, I will offer Tehran a credible path back to diplomacy.” ABU MOHAMMED AL-MASRI, AL QAEDA'S NO. 2, KILLED IN US-ISRAEL JOINT OPERATION IN IRAN However, Biden plans to push back against Iran’s “destabilizing activities, which threaten our friends and partners in the region,” and goes on to say that if Iran chooses confrontation he is prepared to defend U.S. interests and troops. “With...
    VIENNA (Reuters) - The U.N. nuclear watchdog and the United States pressured Iran on Wednesday to finally explain the origin of uranium particles found almost two years ago at an old but undeclared site that Israel has called a "secret atomic warehouse". Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu drew attention to the Turqazabad site in Tehran in a speech to the United Nations in September 2018, urging the International Atomic Energy Agency to visit it. Iran called it a carpet-cleaning facility. IAEA inspectors went there in February 2019 and took environmental samples that showed traces of processed uranium. The Vienna-based U.N. watchdog has been seeking answers on where those traces came from ever since; it says only part of Iran's explanations have held water. "We believe they need to give us information which is credible. What they are telling us from a technical point of view doesn't add up, so they...
    IRAN has stepped up production of material that can be used for nuclear weapons at a site Donald Trump came close to ordering an attack on. Tehran is pumping nuclear fuel into advanced uranium-enriching centrifuges installed underground at Natanz, the UN’s nuclear watchdog has said. 4The Natanz nuclear facility has stepped up enriched uranium productionCredit: AP:Associated Press 4Donald Trump wanted to the US to attack the facility Credit: AFP - Getty Under the terms of Iran's 2015 deal with world powers - which Trump tore up last year - it is only meant to enrich uranium with a less sophisticated variety of centrifuges. Enriched uranium is a key material in the manufacture of nuclear weapons and Iran was limited by the international agreement on how much it is allowed to hold. The UN nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, recently warned that Iran's stockpile of enriched uranium at Natanz has risen to...
    Tehran —  Iran said Wednesday that it would "automatically" return to its nuclear commitments if U.S. President-elect Joe Biden lifts sanctions imposed over the past two years by President Donald Trump. But even as it dangled the offer, Tehran kept the pressure on the U.S. and other countries by forging ahead with its nuclear program in violation of the 2015 international nuclear pact that Mr. Trump abandoned. Tehran's return to its commitments under the deal "can be done automatically and needs no conditions or even negotiations," Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in comments published in the state-run Iran daily. Decades old U.S.-Iranian tensions escalated after President Trump unilaterally withdrew from the landmark nuclear agreement in 2018 and reimposed, and then reinforced, crippling sanctions. Inside Iran's coronavirus catastrophe 03:57 While Mr. Trump has sought to maximize pressure on Iran and isolate it globally, Mr. Biden has proposed to...
    By DAVID RISING, Associated Press BERLIN (AP) — The head of the U.N. atomic watchdog agency confirmed on Wednesday reports that Iran has begun operating centrifuges installed at an underground site, but said they had been moved from another facility so the country's overall uranium-enriching capabilities have not increased. Rafael Grossi, director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, told reporters in Vienna that the 174 centrifuges had been moved into a new area of the Natanz nuclear site and had recently begun operating. He said that operation of centrifuges of that type was in violation of the nuclear deal Iran had signed with world powers in 2015 — known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — but would not lead to a greater overall output of enriched uranium. Iran is already far past the deal's limits on enriched uranium, he noted. “It is already beyond the limits...
    BERLIN – The head of the U.N. atomic watchdog agency confirmed on Wednesday reports that Iran has begun operating centrifuges installed at an underground site, but said they had been moved from another facility so the country's overall uranium-enriching capabilities have not increased. Rafael Grossi, director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, told reporters in Vienna that the 174 centrifuges had been moved into a new area of the Natanz nuclear site and had recently begun operating. He said that operation of centrifuges of that type was in violation of the nuclear deal Iran had signed with world powers in 2015 — known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — but would not lead to a greater overall output of enriched uranium. Iran is already far past the deal's limits on enriched uranium, he noted. “It is already beyond the limits of the JCPOA but in...
    BERLIN (AP) — The head of the U.N. atomic watchdog agency confirmed on Wednesday reports that Iran has begun operating centrifuges installed at an underground site, but said they had been moved from another facility so the country’s overall uranium-enriching capabilities have not increased. Rafael Grossi, director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, told reporters in Vienna that the 174 centrifuges had been moved into a new area of the Natanz nuclear site and had recently begun operating. He said that operation of centrifuges of that type was in violation of the nuclear deal Iran had signed with world powers in 2015 — known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — but would not lead to a greater overall output of enriched uranium. Iran is already far past the deal’s limits on enriched uranium, he noted. “It is already beyond the limits of the JCPOA but in...
    Iran has fired up advanced uranium centrifuges installed at its underground Natanz site a day after it emerged Donald Trump asked for options on attacking the facility. Tehran is pumping nuclear fuel into high-tech IR-2m machines at Natanz, in contravention of an international deal to only use first generation IR-1 machines, a UN report revealed today. Trump held an Oval Office meeting last week where he was 'talked out of' launching strikes on Iran after a previous UN report showed a massive increase in nuclear stockpiles in breach of the Obama-era pact which Trump abandoned in 2018. Defence sources told The New York Times that Trump asked for options on a bombardment - likely to have targeted Iran's foremost nuclear facility, Natanz.  Last week's report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) showed an interlinked cluster of IR-2ms had been moved underground into Natanz. But significantly, that report said no fuel...
    SAUDI Arabia has threatened to arm itself with nuclear weapons unless Joe Biden succeeds in stopping Iran developing them. The desert kingdom’s has strongly backed the hardline stance of Donald Trump towards Iran but its foreign minister said it was waiting to see what the new president’s policy will be 4Adel al-Jubeir said developing nuclear weapons was 'definitely and option' 4Iran has continued testing ballistic missileCredit: AP:Associated Press Last year, Trump tore up an international agreement aimed at limiting Iran’s ability to produce nuclear weapon called a "horrible, one-sided deal". The UN nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, recently warned that Iran's stockpile of enriched uranium has risen to more than 12 times the limit permitted since Trump unilaterally withdrew from the deal. Asked if Saudi Arabia could develop nuclear weapons in response, the country’s minister of state for foreign affairs Adel al-Jubeir replied: “It’s definitely an option.” “Saudi Arabia has made...
    In this episode of Intelligence Matters, Michael Morell interviews Sue Mi Terry, senior fellow and Korea chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies about the threats posed by North Korea to U.S. national security. They discuss the advancement of North Korea's nuclear missile program as U.S. attempts to negotiate denuclearization have halted. Terry is concerned about possible North Korean provocation during the Biden administration transition. HIGHLIGHTS:   North Korea and nuclear weapons: "They pursued nuclear weapons for deterrence. What they truly want, the overarching goal, is regime survival. Nuclear weapons serve that purpose. With nuclear weapons they can deter the United States or any other threat. Nuclear weapons also give Kim Jong-un North Korean regime legitimacy. It is a rallying card. With nuclear weapons, they can rally the people. It is a source of pride for the North Koreans. It justifies all the deprivations that those people have...
    President Donald Trump asked his top aides about the possibility of taking military action against Iran’s nuclear program before leaving office, The New York Times (NYT) reported Monday. Trump reportedly asked his aides about Iran’s nuclear program after international inspectors discovered a marked increase in the nation’s nuclear stockpile, according to NYT. The inspectors reportedly say the country currently possesses 5,385 pounds of low-enriched uranium which, once further enriched over the course of several months, would be enough to create two nuclear weapons. It is unclear whether Trump was truly interested in attacking Iran or merely taking stock of his administration’s options. Trump has argued since the earliest days of his administration that former President Barack Obama’s Iran nuclear deal was ineffective in preventing the country from obtaining nuclear weapons. His administration stopped honoring the terms of the deal and reinstated sanctions on Iran in August. The Iranian government responded...
    Mr Trump asked advisers about the possibility of launching an attack – REUTERS President Trump, with two months left in office, asked for options on attacking Iran’s main nuclear site last week but ultimately decided against taking the dramatic step, a US official said on Monday. Mr Trump made the request during an Oval Office meeting on Thursday with his top national security aides, including Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, new acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller and General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the official said. Mr Trump, who has refused to concede and is challenging the results of the presidential election, is due to hand over power to Democratic President-elect Joe Biden on January 20. The official confirmed the account of the meeting in The New York Times, which reported that the advisers persuaded Mr Trump not to go ahead with a...
    (CNN)President Donald Trump last week asked senior aides what possibilities he had for an offensive strike on Iran's primary nuclear site, The New York Times reported Monday.Citing four current and former US officials, the paper reported that the meeting occurred in the Oval Office on Thursday. A day before, the International Atomic Energy Agency issued a report obtained by the Times stating that Iran's stockpiles of uranium had reached 12 times the 300-kilogram limit set in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the landmark nuclear deal Iran signed with the United States and five other nations in 2015. Trump took the US out of the deal in 2018.CNN has reached out to the agency for a copy of the report.Trump asked his highest-ranking national security advisers what possible responses were available to him and how best to respond to Iran, officials told the Times.Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State...
    President Donald Trump asked for options on attacking Irans main nuclear site last week but ultimately decided against taking the dramatic step, a U.S. official said on Monday. Trump made the request during a meeting on Thursday with his top national security aides, including Vice President Mike Pence, his new Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller, and General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the official said. The official confirmed the account of the meeting in The New York Times, which reported that the advisers persuaded Trump not to go ahead with a strike because of the risk of a broader conflict. "He asked for options. They gave him the scenarios and he ultimately decided not to go forward," the official said. The White House declined comment. Trump has spent all four years of his presidency engaging in an aggressive policy against Iran, withdrawing from the Iran nuclear...
    By Steve Holland | Reuters WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump asked for options on attacking Iran’s main nuclear site last week but ultimately decided against taking the dramatic step, a U.S. official said on Monday. Trump made the request during a meeting on Thursday with his top national security aides, including Vice President Mike Pence, his new Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller, and General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the official said. The official confirmed the account of the meeting in The New York Times, which reported that the advisers persuaded Trump not to go ahead with a strike because of the risk of a broader conflict. “He asked for options. They gave him the scenarios and he ultimately decided not to go forward,” the official said. The White House declined comment. Trump has spent all four years of his presidency engaging in an aggressive policy...
    One legacy of President Trump’s “America First” foreign policy is the clear message to the rest of the world that no deal with the United States can be relied on once the president who made it is gone. Trump spent his four years in office ripping up agreements made by several of his predecessors, most notability the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which he called the "worst deal ever," negotiated by President Barack Obama and signed by six other world powers, including U.S. allies Germany, France, the United Kingdom, and the European Union. Trump began his tenure by quickly exiting the Paris climate accord and ended it by notifying the World Health Organization the U.S. would withdraw from the body, which Trump blames for failing to confront Beijing over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic. In between, Trump withdrew from the landmark Cold War-era Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, which banned...
    Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is continuing to blacklist Iranian entities in the lame-duck period after the election as Iran hawks urge President-elect Joe Biden to use President Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign as “leverage” in expected talks with the regime. “It’s a crazy idea to think that you’re going to get back into a deal that permitted a clean pathway for the Iranians to have a nuclear weapon by which they could terrorize the entire world,” Pompeo told conservative talk radio host Hugh Hewitt. “Going back to it would just be crazy.” Thus, Pompeo almost seemed to warn Biden’s team against a mere restoration of the 2015 nuclear deal, although he has avoided contradicting Trump's continuing challenge of the apparent results of the 2020 presidential elections. Yet, Pompeo also calls attention to the central issue of any impending negotiation with Iran: Will the next administration try to force...
    H.R. McMaster, President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser, expressed his concerns about a potential resurrection of the Iran nuclear deal under a Joe Biden presidential administration Wednesday during an interview with Bret Baier. He called a return to the agreement a “big mistake.”   Baier opens the segment by mentioning a 2019 report by a United Nations-affiliated nuclear watchdog that said that Iran was making enriched uranium beyond limits, thus breaching the terms of the nuclear deal. The Trump administration withdrew from the deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in 2018, and has implemented numerous sanctions on Iran, including on key parts of the country’s oil industry. McMaster said he was concerned about national security during the transition period between presidencies, especially as foreign adversaries, like the “Chinese Commnunist Party to Vladimir Putin to jihadist terrorists” and Iran may seek to take advantage...
    The United States will increase economic pressure against Iran through the transition to the Biden administration, according to State Department officials. The Trump administration will implement “a steady stream of sanctions through the end of the administration” as a “continuation of our policy,” according to a senior State Department official. Senior Trump administration officials are also warning the incoming administration against relaxing pressure against Iran.  “If the pressure is not utilized, if it’s really discarded, that would be, I think, very foolish, even tragic,” said Elliott Abrams, the State Department’s special representative for Iran and Venezuela, while traveling this week in Saudi Arabia.  AT UN, CRAFT TEARS INTO IRAN FOR 'FANNING THE FLAMES' OF VIOLENCE, INSTABILITY IN MIDDLE EAST President-elect Joe Biden has promised to rejoin the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement, negotiated while he was vice president, if Iran resumes compliance. The Trump administration withdrew from the nuclear deal in 2018...
    By JON GAMBRELL, Associated Press ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The U.S. special representative for Iran insisted Thursday a pressure campaign of sanctions targeting Iran would persist into the administration of Joe Biden, even as the president-elect has pledged to potentially return America to Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers. Elliot Abrams, who also serves as the U.S. special representative to Venezuela, said sanctions targeting Iran for human rights violations, its ballistic missile program and its regional influence would go on. That, as well as continued scrutiny by United Nations inspectors and American partners in the Mideast, would maintain that pressure, he said. Iran now has far more uranium than allowed under the deal since President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the accord in 2018. The Mideast also has been roiled by tensions between Tehran and Washington, which pushed the two countries to the brink of war at...
    ABU DHABI – The U.S. special representative for Iran insisted Thursday a pressure campaign of sanctions targeting Iran would persist into the administration of Joe Biden, even as the president-elect has pledged to potentially return America to Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers. Elliot Abrams, who also serves as the U.S. special representative to Venezuela, said sanctions targeting Iran for human rights violations, its ballistic missile program and its regional influence would go on. That, as well as continued scrutiny by United Nations inspectors and American partners in the Mideast, would maintain that pressure, he said. Iran now has far more uranium than allowed under the deal since President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the accord in 2018. The Mideast also has been roiled by tensions between Tehran and Washington, which pushed the two countries to the brink of war at the beginning of the year. "Even...
    Saudi Arabia’s King Salman urged world powers Thursday to take a “firm stance” against its arch-rival Iran, as expectations mount that US President-elect Joe Biden will seek to revive a 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran. Riyadh appears wary of Biden’s pledge to revisit the nuclear pact between major powers and Iran, a landmark deal that was negotiated when he served as vice president under Barack Obama. The king’s remarks come a day after the UN nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, warned that Iran’s stockpile of enriched uranium has risen to more than 12 times the limit permitted under the 2015 deal since President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from it. “The kingdom calls on the international community to take a firm stance towards the Iranian regime,” the king said in his annual address to the Shura Council, the top government advisory body. “This firm stance must guarantee that the Iranian regime is...
    Wednesday on Fox News Channel’s “Special Report,” H.R. McMaster, a former National Security Advisor for the Trump administration, offered an assessment of what could come in the final days of the Trump administration, assuming the vote outcome goes in Joe Biden favor, regarding tensions between Iran and Israel. McMaster said it was possible Israel could act if it has detected a threat from Iran. “You know, Israel follows the Begin Doctrine, right, which means that they will not accept a hostile state having the most destructive weapons on Earth,” he said. “And we have seen this in the past with Israeli Defense Force strikes in Syria. Remember 2007, when North Korea was helping construct a nuclear weapons facility in the Syrian desert, and the Israeli Defense Force struck that, and also similar strikes in Iraq as well earlier than that. So I think that it’s a possibility.” “We’re — in...
    President-elect Joe Biden should not rejoin the 2015 Iran nuclear deal once he takes office, former National Security Adviser Gen. H.R. McMaster told "Special Report" Wednesday. McMaster told host Bret Baier that the deal forged with the Tehran regime by then-Secretary of State John Kerry failed to consider the "hostile ideology" of the Iranian government and the 40 years of proxy wars Iran has fought against America. "The big payoffs to Iran when the deal was signed, as well as the relief of sanctions -- what did they do with that money?" McMaster asked. "They applied that money to intensifying the sectarian violence across the region in an effort, really, to put a proxy army on the border of Israel." "It would be a really big mistake to try to turn the clock back to 2016 and resurrect the Iran nuclear deal, [which] was a political disaster masquerading as a diplomatic triumph," he added. McMaster went on to say that presidential transition periods are dangerous times...
    VIENNA – Iran continues to increase its stockpile of low-enriched uranium far beyond the limits set in a landmark nuclear deal with world powers and to enrich it to a greater purity than permitted, the U.N.’s atomic watchdog agency said Wednesday. The International Atomic Energy Agency reported in a confidential document distributed to member countries and seen by The Associated Press that Iran as of Nov. 2 had a stockpile of 2,442.9 kilograms (5385.7 pounds) of low-enriched uranium, up from 2,105.4 kilograms (4,641.6 pounds) reported on Aug. 25. The nuclear deal signed in 2015 with the United States, Germany, France, Britain, China and Russia, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, allows Iran only to keep a stockpile of 202.8 kilograms (447 pounds). The IAEA reported that Iran has also been continuing to enrich uranium to a purity of up to 4.5%, higher than the 3.67% allowed...
    VIENNA (AP) — Iran continues to increase its stockpile of low-enriched uranium far beyond the limits set in a landmark nuclear deal with world powers and to enrich it to a greater purity than permitted, the U.N.’s atomic watchdog agency said Wednesday. The International Atomic Energy Agency reported in a confidential document distributed to member countries and seen by The Associated Press that Iran as of Nov. 2 had a stockpile of 2,442.9 kilograms (5385.7 pounds) of low-enriched uranium, up from 2,105.4 kilograms (4,641.6 pounds) reported on Aug. 25. The nuclear deal signed in 2015 with the United States, Germany, France, Britain, China and Russia, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, allows Iran only to keep a stockpile of 202.8 kilograms (447 pounds). The IAEA reported that Iran has also been continuing to enrich uranium to a purity of up to 4.5%, higher than the 3.67%...
    VIENNA (AP) — Iran continues to increase its stockpile of low-enriched uranium far beyond the limits set in a landmark nuclear deal with world powers and to enrich it to a greater purity than permitted, the U.N.’s atomic watchdog agency said Wednesday. The International Atomic Energy Agency reported in a confidential document distributed to member countries and seen by The Associated Press that Iran as of Nov. 2 had a stockpile of 2,442.9 kilograms (5385.7 pounds) of low-enriched uranium, up from 2,105.4 kilograms (4,641.6 pounds) reported on Aug. 25. The nuclear deal signed in 2015 with the United States, Germany, France, Britain, China and Russia, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, allows Iran only to keep a stockpile of 202.8 kilograms (447 pounds). The IAEA reported that Iran has also been continuing to enrich uranium to a purity of up to 4.5%, higher than the 3.67%...
    VIENNA (AP) — U.N. atomic watchdog: Iran continues to increase stockpile of low-enriched uranium past nuclear deal limits. Copyright © 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.
    JERUSALEM (AP) — The U.S. envoy for Iran says the Trump administration will maintain its pressure campaign until the inauguration and anticipates it will be difficult for a future President Joe Biden to bring the U.S. back into the 2015 nuclear agreement. Elliott Abrams spoke to local journalists on Monday during a visit to Israel, which was staunchly opposed to the nuclear agreement. “It doesn’t really matter who is president on Jan. 20 in the sense that there’s going to be a negotiation with Iran anyway,” Abrams said, echoing the Trump administration’s position that the U.S. election results are not final until they have been officially certified. “Whether it is possible to go back to the JCPOA remains to be seen,” he added, referring to the Iran deal. President-elect Joe Biden has said he hopes to return the U.S. to the agreement with world powers, in which Iran agreed to...
    Israel's former ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon provided insight on Monday into what a Biden presidency could mean for Middle East peace. Speaking from Israel after completing a five-year stint as Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations in July, Danon told Fox News on Monday that “we respect the democracy in the United States” and “appreciate the process,” citing the fact that there is also a democratic system in Israel. “We know it is sometimes messy and choppy, but it is the best system we have,” said Danon, who is now the chairman of World Likud, a political party in Israel. He stressed that Israel has to be “grateful to President Trump for what he did for Israel in the last four years,” noting that the Trump administration promoted peace treaties in the region, moved the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and pulled out of the Iran...
    Joe Biden has promised a change in US policy on Iran, but the president-elect’s room for manoeuvre with the Islamic republic is narrow, and time is running out. While outgoing US President Donald Trump has declared Tehran his arch-foe and sought to isolate it globally, Biden has suggested he would offer it a “credible path back to diplomacy”. Unlike four years ago, the Iran issue, centred on fears it is seeking a nuclear bomb, was largely absent from campaigning for the 2020 US presidential election, and Biden’s proposals on the subject are still rather vague. His task of trying to reconnect with Tehran promises to be difficult as the confrontational approach under Trump has seen Iran’s distrust of the Americans intensify. Sworn enemies for more than 40 years, the US and Iran have twice come to the brink of war since mid-2019 amid soaring tensions over a landmark deal on...
    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s president called on President-elect Joe Biden to “compensate for past mistakes” and return the U.S. to Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, a state-run news agency reported Sunday. Hassan Rouhani’s comments mark the highest-level response from Iran to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris clinching the Nov. 3 election. “Now, an opportunity has come up for the next U.S. administration to compensate for past mistakes and return to the path of complying with international agreements through respect of international norms,” the state-run IRNA news agency quoted him as saying. Under President Donald Trump, tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated, reaching a fever pitch earlier this year. One of Trump’s signature foreign policy moves was unilaterally withdrawing the U.S. from Iran’s nuclear deal in 2018, which had seen Tehran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic...
    TEHRAN – Iran's president called on President-elect Joe Biden to “compensate for past mistakes” and return the U.S. to Tehran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, a state-run news agency reported Sunday. Hassan Rouhani's comments mark the highest-level response from Iran to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris clinching the Nov. 3 election. “Now, an opportunity has come up for the next U.S. administration to compensate for past mistakes and return to the path of complying with international agreements through respect of international norms,” the state-run IRNA news agency quoted him as saying. Under President Donald Trump, tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated, reaching a fever pitch earlier this year. One of Trump's signature foreign policy moves was unilaterally withdrawing the U.S. from Iran's nuclear deal in 2018, which had seen Tehran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. ...
    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran's president called on President-elect Joe Biden to “compensate for past mistakes” and return the U.S. to Tehran's 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, a state-run news agency reported Sunday. Hassan Rouhani's comments mark the highest-level response from Iran to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris clinching the Nov. 3 election. “Now, an opportunity has come up for the next U.S. administration to compensate for past mistakes and return to the path of complying with international agreements through respect of international norms,” the state-run IRNA news agency quoted him as saying. Under President Donald Trump, tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated, reaching fever-pitch earlier this year. One of Trump's signature foreign policy moves was unilaterally withdrawing the U.S. from Iran's nuclear deal in 2018, which had seen Tehran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. The U.S. has...
    TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s president called on President-elect Joe Biden to “compensate for past mistakes” and return the U.S. to Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, a state-run news agency reported Sunday. Hassan Rouhani’s comments mark the highest-level response from Iran to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris clinching the Nov. 3 election. “Now, an opportunity has come up for the next U.S. administration to compensate for past mistakes and return to the path of complying with international agreements through respect of international norms,” the state-run IRNA news agency quoted him as saying. Under President Donald Trump, tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated, reaching fever-pitch earlier this year. One of Trump’s signature foreign policy moves was unilaterally withdrawing the U.S. from Iran’s nuclear deal in 2018, which had seen Tehran limit its enrichment of uranium in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. The U.S. has...
    (Bloomberg Opinion) — The next U.S. president will have to come to terms with “the will of the Iranian people” and end the economic war against the Islamic Republic, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a speech Thursday. Bluster aside, there is a kernel of truth to his prediction — and President Donald Trump’s Iran policy may make negotiations easier for President-elect Joe Biden. Rouhani, who will have to run for the presidency next year, is dealing with an economy that has been pummeled by the sanctions that the U.S. imposed after 2018, when it withdrew from the 2015 nuclear agreement. Both Trump and Biden have said they would negotiate with Iran after the 2020 election. In those negotiations, the Biden administration should use Trump’s “maximum pressure” policy to its advantage. This sounds like a contradiction. When Trump withdrew from the nuclear deal, Biden and most Democrats denounced what they...