Biden to join Iran nuke deal, seeks talks
Published : 04 Dec 2020, 15:20
President-elect Joe Biden has signaled he will return the United States to a nuclear accord with Iran before quickly launching talks on other concerns, reviving diplomacy to ease soaring tensions.
In his most substantive remarks on Iran since his victory, Biden told The New York Times that he still backed the 2015 deal negotiated under Barack Obama from which defeated president Donald Trump withdrew.
Biden told the newspaper's columnist Thomas Friedman that "it's going to be hard" but that if Iran returned to compliance, the United States would rejoin the agreement.
The top US priority should be to prevent an Iranian nuclear weapon, Biden said, explaining, "The last goddamn thing we need in that part of the world is a buildup of nuclear capability."
After re-entering the agreement, "in consultation with our allies and partners, we're going to engage in negotiations and follow-on agreements to tighten and lengthen Iran's nuclear constraints, as well as address the missile program."
Biden also seeks to address US concerns about Iran's support to militants in Iraq, Yemen and Lebanon and to the Syrian regime.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif last month said that his country would immediately return to its JCPOA commitments if Biden removes crippling sanctions imposed by Trump.
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