The Iran nuclear deal that was agreed upon between the Middle Eastern nation and the six other world powers in November is now reported to be going into effect starting the 20th of January.
President Barack Obama released a statement Sunday in which he attests, "Beginning January 20th, Iran will for the first time start eliminating its stockpile of higher levels of enriched uranium and dismantling some of the infrastructure that makes such enrichment possible."
The November deal that was finally struck after months of meetings and discussions between world officials requires Iran to greatly scale back its nuclear program and end uranium enrichment beyond 5%. The agreement also stipulates that Iran will not open any new enrichment facilities, and will begin destruction of their weapons-grade stockpile. In return, the United States and its negotiating partners agreed to provide Iran with billions of dollars in sanctions relief.
When the plan was finally agreed upon in November, it was stated that Iran would be under surveillance for six months while a more thorough plan was constructed. However, those six months could not begin until the technical details surrounding such surveillance and monitoring could be worked out. After the initial half-year period, a more long-term and comprehensive course of action would begin when the details and strategies necessary for implementing such a plan were determined and agreed upon between Iran, the six world powers, and the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Those initial six months are slated to begin January 20, 2014, as the necessary technicalities have been addressed, and the implementation phase can now move forward.
Secretary of State John Kerry, who was in France in regards to a separate matter, commented on the latest details of the agreement, saying, "We are clear-eyed about the even greater challenges we all face in negotiating a comprehensive agreement. These negotiations will be very difficult, but they represent the best chance we have to resolve this critical national security issue peacefully, and durably.”
At a conference held last month by the Saban Center for Middle East Policy, President Obama said that the odds of a compromise for a long-term plan being reached between Iran and the world powers is still no more than 50/50. However, according to ABC News, Mr. Obama has also said he will veto any new legislation regarding sanctions concerning Iran.
Pres. Obama: Iran to implement nuclear agreement beginning Jan. 20; warns he will veto any legislation enacting new sanctions on Iran.
— ABC News (@ABC) January 12, 2014
Main image courtesy @WhiteHouse via Twitter.