Experts warn against abandoning Iran nuclear deal

Experts fear that the US backing out of the Iranian nuclear agreement could have dire consequences around the globe.

Abandoning the Iran nuclear deal would harm the United States’ credibility on nonproliferation issues and make it more difficult to solve the North Korean crisis, scholars warn.

President Trump announced on Friday, October 13th, that his administration does not plan to certify Iranian compliance with the agreement, pushing the decision of whether or not to reimpose sanctions on Iran to Congress.

Signed in 2015, the nuclear deal framework is between Iran and what is known as the “P5+1” group of world powers: the United States, United Kingdom, France, China, Russia, and Germany.

Advocates of the deal say it helped avert a possible war with Iran and a Middle Eastern nuclear arms race. Critics say it will only delay Iran’s march toward a nuclear bomb. The agreement aims to limit Iran’s ability to create nuclear weapons; in return, Iran received relief from economic penalties and sanctions.

The Stanford News Service spoke with two experts—Siegfried Hecker and Abbas Milani—about the deal and the impact backing out could have. Hecker is a top nuclear security expert, former Los Alamos National Laboratory director, and senior fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation at Stanford University. Milani is the director of Iranian studies at the university and an affiliate at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies’ Center on Democracy Development and the Rule of Law.

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