Dec 12, 2020, 4:05 PM
Journalist ID: 956
News Code: 84144337
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American politician: Higher Chance for JCPOA approval at US congress

New York, Dec 12, IRNA - Assistant to Bill Clinton and the then-senior official at the US National Security Council on African Affairs Dennis Jett believes that the JCPOA's supporters in Congress have increased further as compared to 2015, and said that extremists like Senator Tom Cotton should not be taken seriously.

Dennis Jett, who has worked in various US State Department jobs since 1973 and is currently a university professor for international affairs, made remarks in an interview with IRNA on Wednesday.

Q: Do you expect the incoming Biden administration would make a fundamental shift in US foreign policy particularly about JCPOA? 

A: President-elect Biden clearly wants to rejoin the JCPOA and will be willing to do that.

Q: Iran constantly says it will never negotiate about JCPOA, because it is part of UNSC resolution 2231. What should the Biden administration do before they try to make any deal or even negotiation? 

A: I think any negotiation should initially be about the steps necessary on both sides to reactivate the JCPOA without preconditions required by either side. I don't think the renewal of the JCPOA should preclude future talks about other issues that are problems between Iran and other countries including the US. The missile program for instance or how to end the humanitarian disaster in Yemen.

Q: Do you think the Biden administration can maintain JCPOA surviving? 

A: Yes I do. 

Q: How can Iran trust the US again as Trump tore Iran's nuclear deal unilaterally and again some people like Sen. Tom Cotton say without approval by Congress, any agreement would be the same JCPOA finally. 

A: Congress did not approve the JCPOA the first time. It failed to disapprove it because there were not enough votes to do that. I think there is more support in Congress now for the JCPOA than there was in the past so I do not believe the votes to disapprove are there. Cotton is an extremist that few people take seriously. He would make any improvement in the situation impossible and probably make war inevitable, just as there are extremists in Tehran who would do the same thing if they could.

Any agreement would not be based on trust given the state of the relationship between our two countries. But I believe that to improve its economy, Iran should rejoin the JCPOA without preconditions. Even if four years from now there was a new president who returned to Trump's failed policy, that would be four years of economic growth for your country. 

It is a warning by Israel that they see a possible nuclear weapons program as an existential threat. The consequences will depend on whether Iran continues convincingly to assure the world that their nuclear efforts are not intended to create weapons. This was the purpose of the JCPOA and it can achieve that purpose if it is renewed.  

Jett said that "I obviously cannot confirm who carried out the assassination as I only have the information that is in the media. I think Israel's nuclear capability is for defensive purposes and they see it as required given the number of times they have gone to war with their Arab neighbors. So if Iran were to attempt to develop nuclear weapons, it would be a grave threat to Iran's security as Israel would be forced to react and probably other countries in the region like Saudi Arabia as well."


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