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're happy!
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2015-04-26
Author : Muna Al-Fuzai
No one can choose his parents, but can certainly decide the place to live happily ever after. If you are still wondering where to settle and be happy for the...
The big bomb questions
Source : Khaleej Times  
Date : 2015-04-26
Author : Jonathan Power
Rightly the debate over a way to end the Iranian nuclear crisis is now the number one issue in Western foreign policy. Compared with that the partial civil war in...
What goes around comes around
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-04-26
Author : Abdulrahman al-Rashed
Former Syrian political security chief Rustom Ghazaleh, one of the country’s most notorious figures for the past two decades, has died....
Protection of patients' rights
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-04-26
Author : Rasheed Abou-Alsamh
I was not surprised to read in this newspaper that an increasing number of doctors in the Kingdom are refusing to accept patients with medical insurance, insisting that they will...
Simplistic media analyses can harm
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2015-04-26
Author : Khaled Al Maeena
Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday denied that Pakistan has been given a wish list by Saudi Arabia but reiterated that the Pakistani army is committed to act upon...
Nuclear deal a gift to Iran moderates?
Source : The Peninsula  
Date : 2015-04-26
Author : Dr Azmi Bishara
Iranian reformists and US liberals celebrated the agreement in Lausanne despite its ambiguity. They wanted to prepare public opinion and push for a final agreement after overcoming differences on the...
Why is Rouhani coddling the military?
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2015-04-25
Author : Amir Taheri
Even before they seized power in Tehran, Khomeini's followers were known for their expertise in massaging the truth to suit their political aims....
Are there too many expats in the UAE?
Source : Gulf Today  
Date : 2015-04-25
Author : Khalid Al Ameri
An expatriate or "expat" is defined as a person temporarily or permanently residing in a country other than that of their citizenship. In the case of the United Arab Emirates...
Only Saudis should drive taxis
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2015-04-25
Author : Abdullah Munawar Al-Jamili
I stayed in Riyadh for a few days during the book fair that was held there. I used taxis to get around. I noticed that expatriates monopolize this sector under...
Why are there so many road accidents in Saudi Arabia?
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2015-04-25
Author : Abdulrahman Al-Mansour
It is heartbreaking that road accidents and the number of people dying on our roads are both on the increase. These accidents never fail to make headlines in newspapers and...
Time to rebuild Yemen
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-04-25
Author : Abdulrahman al-Rashed
Yemen has been under the spotlight in the Arab region and the rest of the world for four weeks. Everyone has been talking about it since the beginning of the...
Muslims and the UK general polls
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2015-04-25
Author : Neil Berry
The issue of "radicalization" has been notably absent from discussions prompted by the UK general election that takes place on May 7. Considering what a central public issue it is, this...
The war in Yemen is NOT sectarian!
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2015-04-24
Author : Faisal J. Abbas
With Shiite-Iran backing the Houthi militias coup and Sunni-Saudi Arabia leading the military coalition in response to legitimate President Abdrabu Mansour Hadi's plea to save the country, it is completely...
Nasrallah's speech reveals Iran's shock over the Yemen crisis
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2015-04-24
Author : Khairallah M. Khairallah
What are Hezbollah's relations with Yemen and what's the secret behind its interest in it? Is Iran being upset of Saudi policy in Yemen enough for Hezbollah to attack this...
The Saudi Defense
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2015-04-24
Author : Abdulrahman al-Rashed
Two days before the announcement of the end of Operation Decisive Storm, fires were still burning across Yemen and explosions could be heard in the mountainous areas around the Yemeni...
Total 200 Results in 14 Pages
  2 
For more news, views and reports about this topic, please subscribe
to GRC website: www.grc.net
Mon Apr 27, 2015| 08-رجب-1436هـ
Syria changes passport rules for citizens abroad
GCC consulting market grows 15% to $2.5b in '14
Houthis suffer losses in Taiz
Qatar accounts for more than 11% of joint Gulf industrial projects
Bahrain again extends top rights activist's detention
Bahrain GDP growth reaches 4.5% in 2014
Yemeni minister rejects Saleh's call for talks
Saudi Arabia largest Islamic banking market in the world
More terrorists figure on wanted list
Iran Oil Show to unveil $40b package of investment
PM Abadi urges int'l community to help Iraq in war against ISIL
Cyprus keen to boost bilateral trade, woos Omani investors
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince, Saudi Defense Min. discuss Yemen's conditions
SR2,400 levy: Saudi govt to compensate contractors
Al-Zayani reiterates GCC unity, effective diplomacy at Doha event
UAE opens doors to Africa
    Newspaper Editorials
Quake preparedness
Qatar's roadmap to achieve sustainability
More>>  
    Opinions
An unsustainable refugee crisis
Iran's dirty tactics not likely to work
More>>  
    GCC Press Agencies
Day's main stories from the GCC Press Agencies
    Reports
Prisons in Yemen
Hearing on U.S. Middle East Policy
More>>  
    Bank Reports
Saudi Arabia Banking Sector
GCC Equity Monitor - Global
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
Islamic Finance: A three-volumes series.
United Arab Emirates’ Legal Framework of Migration
Evaluating Financial Literacy Training for Migrant Workers in the Gulf
    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  |   59-- 59 Middle Page :0  --   | Right : 59 - 59--en--sess-enreq-en-coming