Feb 14, 2021, 12:21 PM
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Biden’s promise to return to JCPOA

Tehran, Feb 14, IRNA – Joe Biden, since the time he was a leading democrat candidate for 2020 presidential race, announced returning to international commitments, JCPOA in particular, as his core campaign promise; however, how to fulfill the promise was always a matter of deliberation among experts.

Will the US return to the deal signed by Iran and six world powers during Biden’s term and vice president without preconditions? Or will he use the deal a basis for new negotiations in accordance with new regional and international requirements?

Biden’s approach to International Relations

The presidential election in the United States came to a conclusion in a way that peace advocates in the world became hopeful that the US would once again embrace diplomacy and multilateralism. Raised in the political sphere of the United States, Biden is known to be an advocate of negotiation in resolving international conflicts. He has a liberalist, integrationist view on international relations and would use his soft power in advancing his global policies. Therefore, returning to the JCPOA became more serious when he entered the White House in January 20 and his cabinet arrangement suggested that he preferred diplomacy and negotiation as capacity to manage international challenges.

JCPOA as a pivot in US foreign policy

Three week into office, Biden and his foreign policy men have indicated that the JCPOA and possible negotiations are important issues in consideration. However, the situation gets complicated when Biden administration hesitates to conclude that they have to take confidence building measure by taking the first step, that is to lift sanctions imposed after US withdrawal of the JCPOA in 2018. Biden administration stating that Iran has to return the full compliance with the deal bespeaks the fact that they’re not willing to concessions easily.

Biden administration considers the sanctions as an opportunity to reach a broader and more comprehensive deal, as they thinks that Iran would concede because it is under economic pressure. He stated in a recent interview that they’re not going to lift sanction until Iran takes the first step. There seems that Biden is distancing from his initial statements to play his favorite game.

From US-Europe talks to Iran parliament deadline

In this game, the US administration is preparing a strategy to maintain the content of sanctions regime and keep Iranian economy vulnerable even in case it returns to the JCPOA. Biden, in the meantime, is also seeking to unite European allies, as seen in recent talks held by his Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and special U.S. envoy for Iran Robert Malley with European counterparts.

This can make an opportunity for a closer transatlantic proximity, with Iran’s parliament deadline set two months ago. Iranian parliament tasked the government with going forward with 20 percent uranium enrichment, ceasing to implement the Additional Protocol and limiting IAEA inspection in case the United States fails to lift sanctions until February 21. This would pave the way for the US to secure European support.

Therefore, Iran’s diplomatic apparatus has to double down its efforts on media and diplomatic levels to shed light on the US refusing to abide by its commitments and prevent Washington-Brussels alliance in this regard. 

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