Home Page - Gulf in the Media
HomePoliticsEconomy                               Set Gulfinthemedia.com as home page
Opinions
"Postings of opinions published in the Gulf and international newspapers
 Print  Send This Page
Save Listen to this Article
Deal in the making?   

Gulf Today - 21 April, 2012
Author: P.V Vivekanand

Something is happening behind the scenes in the effort to persuade Iran to call off its 20 per cent nuclear enrichment plan. Some commentators in the US seem to have inside information that an impending deal with Iran over its nuclear programme and the ongoing diplomatic exchanges over the issue are choreographed.

In a Washington Post column, David Ignatius asserts that “the basic framework (for an agreement) was set weeks ago” under which “Iran would agree to stop enriching uranium to the 20 per cent level and to halt work at an underground facility near Qom built for higher enrichment. Iran would export its stockpile of highly enriched uranium for final processing to 20 per cent, for use in medical isotopes.”

In return, the US will ease the sanctions imposed on Iran and allow it to continue enriching uranium 3.5 per cent to five per cent.

This was a US proposal that was conveyed to Tehran “weeks before” Iran and the “P5+1” — the United States, Britain, Russia, China, France and Germany — met in Istanbul on April 14. Israeli reports had spoken of a “secret channel” between Washington and Tehran. That “secret back channel,” it appears, ran through European foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton to the chief Iranian negotiator Saeed Jalili.

Ashton and Jalili had an exchange of letters, with the EU foreign policy chief proposing “a confidence-building exercise aimed at facilitating a constructive dialogue on the basis of reciprocity and a step-by-step approach.”

Jalili is said to have responded that because the West was willing to recognise Iran’s right to peaceful nuclear energy, “our talks for co-operation based on step-by-step principles and reciprocity on Iran’s nuclear issue could be commenced.”

In any case, the Ashton-Jalili contacts could not be described as “secret back channel” because they are the authorised representatives of the two sides.

On April 15, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused US President Barack Obama of handing over a “freebie” to Iran and Obama rejected the assertion.

After the Istanbul meeting, Iran acted as if its nuclear rights as a signatory of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have been recognised.

“Iran is following the script,” Ignatius wrote, and will “describe their actions not as concessions to the West but as ‘confidence-building’ measures,” while “the West would describe its easing of sanctions not as a climbdown but as ‘reciprocity’.” He described public “language of these talks” an “exercise.”

On April 16, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi explained that “making 20 per cent fuel is our right,” but that “if they guarantee that they will provide us with the different levels of enriched fuel that we need, then that would be another issue.”

According to Ignatius, all these are part of a script.

The exchange between Netanyahu and Obama was aimed at ensuring that Tehran remains under pressure to follow through with the deal.

“Netanyahu played his expected role in this choreography,” by playing “a perfect rebuff – just scornful enough to keep the Iranians (and the Americans, too) worried that the Israelis might launch a military attack this summer if no real progress is made in the talks,” according to Ignatius.

Israel’s Haaretz daily reported that Netanyahu was fully briefed both before and after the Istanbul meeting on the P5+1 strategy.

Haaretz quoted an unnamed US official as saying that in the weeks prior to the Istanbul talks, “detailed discussions were held with Israel, both face to face and by telephone, on coordination of the approach to the talks.”

The head of the US delegation to the talks, Wendy Sherman, fully briefed Israel’s ambassador in Washington, Michael Oren, by phone several hours after the talks concluded in Turkey, said the report.

As such, Netanyahu knew exactly what was being offered to Iran. So, it fits into the “choreography” theory.

Another Washington Post columist, Fareed Zakaria, also referred to the US proposal in an April 12 column with the same details as those given by Ignatius. He argues that for the proposal to succeed Iran should make deep concessions in comprehensive inspections. According to Zakaria, the P5+1 should use a 2011 International Atomic Energy Agency report as a checklist of activities that “Iran would commit to refraining from and insist that Iran allow the IAEA unfettered access to its sites until the agency is satisfied that any such military programme has been shut down.”

“Iran would have to receive some reward for accepting such unprecedented inspections, and the obvious option would be the relaxation of sanctions, step by step, as inspections proceed unimpeded,” adds Zakaria.

What all these add up to is that a negotiated settlement of the dispute is possible although there are many uncertainties.

Two points hang in the air. Acceptance of the proposal by Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khomeini and by the Republican party in the US.

Khomenei, Zakaria notes, “has consolidated power: he has beaten back the Green movement; accommodated one key rival, Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani; and sidelined another, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Khamenei has also given himself room to make concessions on the nuclear programme.”

Jalili himself referred to Iran’s possible acceptance of the deal. “We made progress” in Istanbul, he said last week, adding that Khamenei’s religious edict renouncing nuclear weapons “created an opportunity for concrete steps toward disarmament and non-proliferation.” He said “the next talks should be based on confidence-building measures, which would build the confidence of Iranians.”

The second point is possible Republican opposition to making any deal with Iran. The heavily pro-Israel Republicans have been calling for military action against Iran and many of them reject the idea of having any dealings with Tehran. They are likely to pose questions and add further conditions to the proposal that Iran might not find acceptable.

If the Republicans, Zakaria writes, “demagogue any deal, or refuse to reciprocate on sanctions, there will be no deal.”

No matter how the effort for a deal turns out, the overriding factor is whether Iran could be trusted to keep its word and whether Israel will be satisfied.
 
'We want to feel proud'
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2014-10-29
Author : Intisaar Al-Ma'tooq
When a local investor failed to continue pulling the economic rope in his country, it became necessary to look for other investors with adequate capability to hold and pull the...
Only in Kuwait – Part 4
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-10-29
Author : Talal Al-Ghannam
Only in Kuwait poor taxi drivers are chased by the police no matter where they stop for the ride, even at legal stop points. I wonder why there are taxis...
It's time to get to work
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-10-29
Author : Abd Al-Rahman Alyan
His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah opened the 14th session of Kuwait's National Assembly yesterday, urging lawmakers and the government to control spending and diversify Kuwait's economy...
Granting citizenship to the children of Saudi mothers will enrich our culture
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-10-29
Author : Tariq A. Al-Maeena
About a year ago, a popular Emirati writer suggested in a widely read Gulf newspaper that expatriates living in the UAE should be given citizenship if they so desired. ...
Nothing Islamic about IS
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-10-29
Author : Abdulateef Al-Mulhim
A few days ago, a video released by the self-ascribed Islamic State (IS) showed an Australian teenage boy threatening western leaders. He was later identified as 17-year-old runaway boy who...
ISIS could prompt what millions of refugees didn’t
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Manuel Almeida
"We have to get [the Kurds] better land under U.N. control and to put those people in the Iraqi territory and take care of them", said President of Turkey Turgut...
The Middle East needs growth and jobs now more than ever
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Masood Ahmed
This fall has brought yet another negative shift in sentiment about the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. As the world’s policymakers left Washington after the IMF/World Bank Annual...
The Beautiful Face of an Ugly Regime
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Diana Mukkaled
In this day and age, with its proliferation of images and videos online, it is easy to become bewitched by a beautiful face and a sweet-sounding voice....
Well done Custodian
Source : Arab Times  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Possession of state-owned land by putting one’s hands on it is common in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This happens when a supposed beneficiary goes to the court, claiming he...
Media war against terror
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Shamlan Al-Essa
Kuwait is hosting an international conference to discuss means of halting campaigns of recruiting jihadists in Iraq and Syria, particularly through the Internet and social media....
IS: A monster created by many countries
Source : The Peninsula  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Abolhassan Bani-Sadr
Islamic State (IS) could not have emerged without support from western powers and their regional allies. These facilitated the travel of jihadists from 80 countries into Syria, funded them, and...
Iran's hardliners not the biggest threat to N-deal
Source : The Peninsula  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Trita Parsi
Negotiations with Iran over the future of its nuclear programme have not even concluded yet some members of Congress are preparing to manufacture a political crisis over a deal....
What's new about our New Year?!
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Khaled M. Batarfi
As I came out of the Singaporean airplane, an airport official came up to greet me. He was all smiles as he welcomed me to Singapore. Another official from the...
No need to panic over IMF warning
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Abdel Aziz Aluwaisheg
On Oct. 25 Christine Lagarde, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), issued a warning of sorts to Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries: Curb spending or risk budget...
No mercy for terrorists
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-10-28
Author : Linda S. Heard
I used to try to understand the mentality of human beings who turn into monsters whose goal in life is to bomb, torture and rape innocents to achieve their political...
Total 200 Results in 14 Pages
  2 
For more news, views and reports about this topic, please subscribe
to GRC website: www.grc.net
Thu Oct 30, 2014| 06-محرم-1436هـ
Houthis seize Yemen city
SR85 billion Riyadh Metro 'a race against time'
National Guard ready for any eventuality: Prince Miteb
UAE among Top 5 in consumer confidence
Agreement between Iran, P5+1 to benefit Int'l community: UN
Opec chief says don't panic on oil price drop
Qatari Emir holds talks with Cameron
Qatar's UK investments hit £30bn
Kuwaiti lawmaker calls for more efforts to combat terrorism
GCC annual inflation rates reach 3.8%
GCC chiefs of staff hold consultative meeting
SEC official: 'Solar energy is a must, not a choice'
Terrorism a common enemy, says Premier
Iran's direct tax income surpasses $ 10b in 7 months
Egypt's nat'l security linked to Gulf security - Al-Sisi tells KUNA
Trade surplus dips 19.9pc in September to QR26.3bn
    Newspaper Editorials
A second chance
Viewpoint
More>>  
    Opinions
Will Egypt Mediate for Assad?
No to dual citizenship
More>>  
    GCC Press Agencies
Day's main stories from the GCC Press Agencies
    Reports
Justice in Transition in Yemen
The United Arab Emirates (UAE): Issues for US Policy
More>>  
    Bank Reports
GCC Markets Performance – May 2014
Saudi Arabia: Baseline Macroeconomic Forecast 2014-16
More>>  
    GRC Analysis
Saudi Arabia and the ASEAN Periphery: Cambodia, Myanmar, and Brunei
NATO and the Future of Gulf Security.
Saudi-Vietnam Relations
    GRC Commentary
Price of not heeding Kingdom's advice
On Relations between Rulers and Citizens: The Need for a New Social/Political Contract in the GCC States
Key Issue Facing the Saudi Ruling House.
    GRC Book Review
Beyond Regionalism? Regional Cooperation, Regionalism and Regionalization in the Middle East
India, GCC and the Global Energy Regime: Exploring Interdependence and Outlook for Collaboration.
    GRC Press Release
Gulf Research Center press releases to the media
    GRC Publications
GCC-Asia Ties and Collective Security
Perpetuating the Rentier State: Patrimonialism in a Globalized World
Labor Market Integration in the GCC Countries
    GRC Newsletters/Bulletins

Enter your email to get the Newsletter
Go
      
Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Terms & Conditions | About Us |
Weather | Qibla Directions | Hijri Date Conversion Tool
Full Page :total time:0  |   04-- 04 Middle Page :0  --   | Right : 04 - 04--en--sess-enreq-en-coming