Washington, D.C. — Today, as details emerge shedding light on the deal with Iran on their nuclear program by the United States and five other world powers, Neera Tanden, President of the Center for American Progress, released the following statement:
The first-step deal announced yesterday in Geneva represents a major achievement by the Obama administration, addressing a top U.S. security challenge. By marshaling all the elements of American power—diplomatic, economic, and military—the United States and its partners haven taken a significant step toward addressing one of the most pressing concerns in the Middle East: the Iranian nuclear program. In exchange for limited, reversible sanctions relief, Iran will halt key aspects of its nuclear work and provide greatly expanded access to International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors.
The next six months will be difficult, as the United States and its P5+1 partners negotiate a comprehensive agreement with Iran that fully addresses the international community’s concerns over Iran’s nuclear program. Congress should refrain from passing further sanctions during this period. The administration should also deepen consultation with members of Congress and allies in the Middle East to make sure their concerns are addressed during this ongoing process.
There remains a range of issues—support for terrorism, domestic human rights abuses, support for the Assad regime, and hostility toward Israel—on which the United States has grave concerns about Iran’s actions. But deepened diplomatic engagement with Iran presents the best chance to address many of these issues. Ensuring that Iran does not obtain a nuclear weapon is a vital American and global concern. Through effective leadership and committed diplomacy, the United States and its partners have created an opportunity to advance our shared security.
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