Statement from Kelsey Davenport, director for nonproliferation policy
For Immediate Release: July 13, 2017
Media Contacts: Kelsey Davenport, director for nonproliferation policy, (202) 463-8270 ext. 102; Daryl G. Kimball, executive director, (202) 463-8270 ext. 107
(Washington, D.C.)—Two years ago on July 14, six world powers and Iran finalized an historic nuclear agreement with Tehran that removed the threat of an Iranian nuclear weapon. The nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, has proven to be a nonproliferation success. The agreement has significantly restricted Iran’s nuclear activities and imposed an intrusive monitoring and verification regime. The threat of a nuclear-armed Iran no longer looms over the international community.
Despite the success of the deal, some policymakers in Washington are recklessly urging the Trump administration to abandon the agreement on the basis of inaccurate claims that Tehran is violating the accord. Six reports from the International Atomic Energy Agency demonstrate that Iran is meeting its commitments and the Trump administration certified in April that Iran is living up to its end of the deal.
Before taking unilateral steps that risk the success of the agreement, Washington should carefully consider the consequences. Abandoning an agreement that is verifiably blocking Iran’s pathways to nuclear weapons is irresponsible and dangerous. It would further destabilize the region, and could open the door to a nuclear-armed Iran or increase the prospect of a costly war in the Middle East. Additionally, pulling out of a multilateral agreement that benefits international security sends the message to U.S. allies and partners that Washington cannot be trusted to follow through on its commitments.
Given the current instability in the Middle East, it is now more vital than ever that Washington continue to support the nuclear deal with Iran and look for options to build on the agreement. Full implementation of the accord benefits U.S. national security and international efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons.
Resources and Factsheets:
- Kelsey Davenport and Tyler Rodgers, The Iran Deal Turns Two, “P5+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert” E-newsletter, July 11, 2017
- Kelsey Davenport, The UN Report on the Iran Deal Resolution: The Good, the Unclear, and the Troubling, Arms Control Now, June 29, 201
- Timeline of Nuclear Diplomacy with Iran, Arms Control Association Factsheet, June 2017
- The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action at a Glance, Arms Control Association Factsheet, January 2016
- Kelsey Davenport and Daryl G. Kimball, Iran’s Ballistic Missile Test: Troubling But Not Cause for Provoking Confrontation, Arms Control Now, February 1, 2017
- Kelsey Davenport, Dismantling the Iran Deal Would be Dangerous and Unwise, Arms Control Association Issue Brief, Volume 8, Issue 7, December 13, 2016