WAND Statement on the Extension of the Iran Nuclear Talks
Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND) makes the following statement on the extension of the nuclear talks to guard against a nuclear Iran.
The negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 (the permanent members of the UN Security Council – U.S., UK, Russia, China, France – plus Germany) have been important for American and international security. They have rolled back and increased transparency on Iran’s nuclear program, making it more difficult for Iran to build a nuclear weapon.
Additionally, the negotiations have succeeded in preventing a military confrontation, which would threaten U.S. security and interests in the Middle East, our troops stationed abroad, and Iranian citizens caught in the crossfire. This diplomacy also strengthens the larger global efforts to stop the spread of nuclear weapons at an especially crucial time as we look ahead to the 2015 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference.
Because the Joint Plan of Action has been extended, Iran’s pathways to a bomb remain closed. In the meantime, positive avenues for peace become increasingly possible. A future deal creates the potential for U.S.-Iran economic, security, and diplomatic cooperation, for increased accountability of Iran’s human rights practices, and for a better future for the Iranian people. None of these outcomes will happen immediately; but without these negotiations they would not exist at all.
WAND believes the U.S. Congress has an important role to play on this issue. Congress, together with the Obama administration, imposed economic sanctions that brought Iran to the negotiating table. Congress will also have a role when a final deal is agreed to in overseeing its implementation and turning sanctions on or off depending on Iran’s compliance.
A comprehensive agreement is within reach; WAND strongly urges U.S. Members of Congress to refrain from legislative actions that would undermine the extension. Taking such action could shift responsibility from Iran to the United States for successfully completing a deal. Moreover, it could unravel the agreement altogether. Iran would be free to go back to spinning centrifuges with much less international oversight. Prospects for war would increase. We encourage actions that support this diplomatic process such as press statements and statements for the Congressional record.
Nuclear Weapons Policy Director