Published originally in POLITICO’s National Security Daily Newsletter.
Iran’s new regime keeps stalling for time, saying it wants to negotiate America’s reentry into the 2015 nuclear deal while keeping all parties at arm’s length.
“In recent days, Iranian officials have held dozens of meetings with foreign officials to discuss the nuclear talks — but revealed few details about when they will return and what they want. And the regime continues to play a game of brinkmanship with the U.N.’s nuclear watchdog agency, striking deals to avoid censures, only to block access for inspectors days later,” POLITICO’s STEPHANIE LIECHTENSTEIN reported.
The result? “The push-pull tactics have fueled worries in diplomatic circles that a return to the landmark 2015 nuclear deal with Iran is becoming increasingly difficult,” Liechtenstein wrote.
Frustration is growing in Washington. Last week, a senior State Department official told reporters “the window of opportunity is open and won’t be open forever.” Then on Thursday, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair BOB MENENDEZ (D-N.J.) told the American Jewish Congress that “I don’t think a return to the [Iran nuclear deal] is sufficient to constrain Iran’s malign activity. And increasingly, I don’t even know how it’s possible when they are so far out of compliance.”