ADL: Many Unanswered Questions on Iranian Nuclear Deal Require Robust Congressional Review

New York, NY, April 2, 2015 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today voiced strong concern over the “many unanswered questions” regarding the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on the Iranian nuclear program announced earlier today in Lausanne, Switzerland, which forms the foundation of progress made so far in discussions between the P5+1 nations and Iran.

Among the parameters of the accord, Iran has agreed to reduce the number of installed centrifuges, to not enrich uranium over 3.67 percent for at least 15 years, and to reduce its current stockpile of low-enriched uranium.

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:

While we all would welcome a diplomatic solution to the Iranian nuclear program, there are many unanswered questions as to whether the deal has the potential to achieve what President Obama has sought in terms of reducing Iran’s ability to build a nuclear weapon. The implementation of the proposed accord has many obstacles because Iran simply cannot be trusted. The apparent rush to remove sanctions gives Iran an incentive to comply with the terms of the agreement, but once sanctions are removed, then what?  The Iranian regime has not changed, and we do not expect a change in its behavior.

Iran’s history of covert activity, noncompliance, and never owning up to that history warrants strong skepticism. Based on Iran’s history of non-compliance and continuing aggression throughout the region, we assume Iran will continue to seek a nuclear-weapon capability and frustrate the implementation of the comprehensive verification mechanisms described in the agreed parameters. We worry that disputes over monitoring and verification activities will be dragged out and allow Iran time and space for illicit activities.

Now is the time for robust congressional review of what may be achieved and may not be because there are a lot of unanswered questions as to the implementation and the verification. Over the next few weeks, experts, the American public and Congress should have an opportunity to hear more from the administration, to analyze the outline and engage in the “robust debate” the president has encouraged. Congress will have a critically important role to play on behalf of the American people as it engages with the Administration in this process.

Secretary Kerry and his team clearly expended great effort to reach this point, and we express appreciation for their work, knowing it is just one more step on the path to reaching that goal. 

 

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