۱۵ تیر ۱۴۰۰ - ۱۰:۲۸
کد خبر: . ۹۷٬۳۸۵

TEHRAN(Bazaar) – Professor Hossein Askari, who teaches international business at the George Washington University, says Biden wants to resurrect the JCPOA and say that it furthers regional security. He also adds that “I think Biden will lift all the previous sanctions that were re-imposed by Trump and only some, not all, of the new Trump sanctions during his presidency.”

Following is the text of the interview with Professor Hossein Askari.

Bazaar: While there was talk about final agreement in the Vienna talks in the next round, no time has been set for the next round of talks and the talks seem to have stalled. What is your assessment?

Askari: I think that the U.S. is sticking in part to its position of trying to get some concession from Iran on the other unrelated issues, while Iran is resisting this and wants to put any such discussion to a later date and see how the U.S. behaves going forward and to get wider concessions from the U.S. However, I believe that they will get some sort of an agreement whereby both sides can claim that they got what they wanted. Iran needs sanctions relief. Biden wants to resurrect the JCPOA and say that it furthers regional security. So I think Biden will lift all the previous sanctions that were re-imposed by Trump and only some, not all, of the new Trump sanctions during his presidency. Iran will surrender its highly enriched uranium, will not dismantle or surrender its more advanced centrifuges and simply agree to discuss other issues of mutual interest at a later date.

Bazaar: For the Obama administration, the JCPOA was the first step in negotiating other issues with Iran. That is, he intended to resolve the nuclear issue first and then move on to other issues. But for Biden, the situation is different, and at the same time as the nuclear talks, he wants to guarantee negotiations on regional issues and so on. Will Biden be successful in this way?

Askari: No. Iran will only agree to discuss them at a later date, which in itself is no concession at all. And at the later date, Iran will demand much in return from the United States if it concedes on anything that is important to the U.S. and its allies.

Bazaar: The fact that Biden is linking the nuclear talks to other issues is that if he lifts the sanctions, he will no longer be able to put effective pressure on Iran. Accordingly, the nuclear negotiations are somehow tied to negotiations on Iran's regional and missile issues. Iran also strongly rejects negotiations on regional and missile issues. Iran's president-elect, Ebrahim Raisi, also rejected negotiations on regional and missile issues in his first press conference since winning the election. In such circumstances, is there a possibility of escalating tensions between Iran and the United States and the failure of the negotiations?

Askari: No, not at all. If Biden lifts sanctions, he can always re-impose them. He loses no leverage on Iran at all. To my mind, he may even gain leverage. Why? Well Iranians may see some direct benefits from the lifting of sanctions and could pressure the government to be more cooperative with the U.S. This has always been an asymmetrical agreement. If it is broken, the U.S. has lost nothing. But if the U.S. breaks it, Iran has given up its enriched uranium, it has mothballed its heavy reactor and its would have losses from lower GDP.

As for escalating tensions. I don’t think so. If the agreement is signed as I predict, then both sides have an interest to keep the agreement going and escalation of hostilities would jeopardize it. But when Biden is no longer president who knows?

Bazaar: Biden's government policy in the Middle East (Persian Gulf) is based on "offshore balancing". Accordingly, the United States intends not to take itself too seriously in the Persian Gulf and to focus on China. The Biden administration's insistence on guaranteeing negotiations on regional and missile issues and Iran's non-acceptance could thwart this policy. What is your opinion on this?

Askari: I don’t think that neither side will get all that they want. Iran cannot abandon its allies in the region. This is unthinkable for Iran. Surrounded by hostile Arabs, except Iraq, in the Persian Gulf and hostile U.S. forces all around. I am sure that anyone with any brain in the Biden Administration realizes this. They know that anything serious along these lines would require enormous U.S. concessions and a Treaty that is ratified by the U.S. Senate. Both of these are at this moment hard for the U.S. even to imagine. They are demanding these concessions from Iran just to be seen as ‘tough” for domestic U.S. consumption. It is simply posturing and empty talk.

۱۵ تیر ۱۴۰۰ - ۱۰:۲۸
کد خبر: ۹۷٬۳۸۵

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