Newscast Media WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama has asked the U.S. Congress to refrain from imposing fresh sanctions against Iran while negotiations on a permanent nuclear deal are underway.
Obama said he will veto a bill on more sanctions against Iran if it comes to his desk while negotiations are continuing between Tehran and six world powers.
But Obama said if Iran ultimately refuses to “say yes” and provide assurance that they are not secretly developing nuclear weapons, he would go to the U.S. Congress and ask them to “tighten the screws.”
Speaking at a joint press conference at the White House with British Prime Minister David Cameron, Obama said there is probably less than a 50 percent chance of a diplomatic deal with Iran.
But he said the likelihood of talks with Iran collapsing would be high if Congress passes a bill for more sanctions against Tehran.
Cameron said there is a prospect of success in talks with Iran, and that he has contacted U.S. senators about the issue.
Source: Radio Free Europe
Newscast Media VIENNA—U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says nuclear talks with
Iran have made good progress but there is “still work to do” to meet a July 20
deadline. Speaking after talks in Vienna between six world powers and Iranian
officials, Kerry said there have been “tough negotiations” and that “very real gaps”
remain in the positions of the two sides.
He said he still believes there is a path forward and that both sides are working in
Kerry said he is returning to Washington to consult with President Barack Obama and
Congress about the prospects for a long-term deal with Iran.
Kerry said he has told Iranian officials that the 19,000 nuclear centrifuges the
country possesses are too many.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a speech last week that Iran
needs tens of thousands more centrifuges.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, in a separate news conference on
July 15, said that although he still hopes a deal would be possible by the July 20
deadline, he believed enough progress has been made to justify an extension.
Source: Radio Free Europe
Newscast Media WASHINGTON—Key Democratic senators are considering whether to
break with President Barack Obama on diplomacy with Iran as the administration is
urging lawmakers to delay a new round of sanctions, according to news reports by
Press TV. At a meeting at the White House on Tuesday, administration officials urged
top staffers to postpone the legislation to give nuclear talks a chance to play out.
“A date has not been finalized yet,” a Senate Banking Committee staffer told The Hill
following the meeting.
The measure, adopted by the House of Representatives in July, would target Iran’s oil
export and its foreign currency reserves. The Senate was to debate the bill in
September but it was held back at the request of the White House as such a measure
would have derailed the nuclear talks, Press TV reported.
As president, it is time for Barack Obama to use the mighty pen to demonstrate to the
“blood-thirsty” warlike cabal attempting to suck the lifeblood out of the peaceful
negotiations, that he is not their puppet.
At most, the dissatisfied actors can only pout, like they always do when they don’t
get their way, even though men are not supposed to pout.
When George W. Bush felt it was time to lift sanctions from Libya, he signed an
Executive Order that restored normal relations between the U.S. and Libya. The Order
Bush signed was called the Presidential Determination No. 2004-30, and he
was able to bypass all the political theatrics.
At this point Obama has nothing to lose. He is not running for office anymore, and all
he has to concentrate on is building a positive legacy, foreign and domestic.
Newscast Media TEHRAN—Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told a major U.S. network
on Wednesday that his administration will never develop nuclear weapons and that he
has full authority to make a deal with Western powers on his country’s atomic
Rouhani made the announcement in an interview with NBC News, the outlet reported.
It said Rouhani also talked about his initial interactions with U.S. President Barack
Obama, who sent him a letter of congratulations after his election and raised “some
“From my point of view, the tone of the letter was positive and constructive,”
Rouhani said. “It could be subtle and tiny steps for a very important future. I believe
the leaders in all countries could think in their national interest and they should not
be under the influence of pressure groups. I hope to witness such an atmosphere in
In an interview with ABC News broadcast on Sunday, Obama said he exchanged
letters with Rouhani, and the Iranians understand the nuclear issue is “a far larger
issue for us than the chemical weapons issue.”
White House spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday that the letter—in which Obama
said the U.S. is open to a resolution that allows Iran to prove its nuclear program is
peaceful—conveyed the need to act quickly because the window for a diplomatic deal
” will not remain open indefinitely.”
by Mu Xuequan
Newscast Media VIENNA—Agreement on probing suspected work on Iran’s controversial nuclear program was expected to be signed soon, said Yukiya Amano, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Tuesday.
“There was an important development on the structured approach document on which we have been working since January,” Amano told reporters at Vienna airport after return from his one-day trip to Tehran where he held talks with chief Iranian nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili.
Amano said the decision was made to reach agreement on the mechanics of giving the IAEA access to sites, scientists and documents it seeks to address international concerns over the country’ nuclear activities.
“There remain some differences, but Mr. Jalili elaborated that the differences will not be an obstacle to reach an agreement,” Amano said.
He added that the two sides “understood each other’s positions better,” which was the reason that “we could make this important development.”
One priority issue for IAEA in recent talks with Iran is the agency’s demand for access to Iran’s Parchin military site southeast of Tehran.
Media said the IAEA has received reports that Iran had tested explosives which could be used to set off a nuclear charge. Iran denied such reports, and insisted access to Parchin would only be granted if Iran and the IAEA agree on certain conditions and steps.
In response to questions on the matter, Amano said “I have raised this issue of access to Parchin, and this issue will be addressed as a part of the implementation of the structured approach document.”
Amano was quoted by Iranian semi-official Mehr news agency on Monday as saying that they held expansive and intensive talks in good atmosphere, and the progress in the dialogue will have positive impact on the wider nuclear talks between Iran and the five permanent UN Security Council members plus Germany in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad on Wednesday.
New round of nuclear talks over the possible military dimensions of Iran’s nuclear activities was resumed between the IAEA and Iran last week. After two days of negotiations, the two sides agreed to meet again, and Amano traveled to Tehran to discuss “issues of mutual interests” with high-level Iranian officials.