Yesterday the Iranian government and the UN based IAEA reached an agreement to increase monitoring of Iran’s nuclear sites. The deal comes amidst talks between Iran, the United States and other nations concerning a possible agreement that would help rollback sanctions placed on the country for allegedly pursuing nuclear weapons.
The framework would give IAEA teams access to a key uranium mine and the site of a planned heavy water reactor, which uses a different type of coolant than regular water and produces a greater amount of plutonium byproduct than conventional reactors. Inspectors have already visited the reactor site, but seek more extensive probing.
Monday’s deal comes as press reports claim six power talks involving US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian representatives had broken down. Secretary Kerry blamed the Iranians for not offering a strong enough deal while others noted France’s recalcitrance. France has a more or less open alliance with Saudi Arabia and may be attempting to sabotage talks.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Paris could not accept a “fool’s game” – in other words, a weak deal with Iran.
Diplomats from other Western nations at first reacted angrily and accused the French of trying to upstage the other powers and causing unnecessary trouble for the talks.
And this comes as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu turns up the heat on rhetoric about the US-Israel alliance. Netanyahu has still not taken military strikes on Iran off the table.
Despite all the drama the next round of negotiations start November 20th.