Fifty U.S. lawmakers, mostly Democrats, have signed a draft letter to U.S. President Joe Biden voicing concerns over the shaping nuclear deal with Iran.
In the letter, the congressmen demand the administration release the complete nuclear agreement to Congress before signing it.
According to Jewish Insider, U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J., has been circulating the letter, which is expected to collect its final signatures by Wednesday. So far, 34 Democratic lawmakers have added their names to the letter.
The draft letter addresses the proposed final nuclear agreement’s alleged provisions, as they have been mentioned publicly in the most recent stages of the negotiations.
Today, I led a bipartisan group of 50 Members (34 Democrats & 16 Republicans) expressing our deep concerns to @POTUS about a potential agreement with Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, and urging the Administration not to act before consulting with Congress. pic.twitter.com/F2YQpc4nxH— Rep Josh Gottheimer (@RepJoshG) September 1, 2022
The letter highlights the dangers of loosening sanctions on Iran, especially in light of recent attempts by allies or proxies of the Iranian regime’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps to attack American citizens on U.S. soil. These included a plot to assassinate John Bolton, who served as national security advisor to former U.S. President Donald Trump, as well as an abduction scheme targeting Iranian-American journalist and human rights activist Masih Alinejad.
The lawmakers argue in the letter that lifting sanctions against Iran would be “inappropriate” and voice alarm over modifying the sanctions that specifically target the IRGC, as well as Iran’s central bank, national development fund and national oil company.
Furthermore, the lawmakers have underlined sensitivities around the nuclear deal that pertain to Russia’s relationship with Iran, arguing that Russia should not be allowed to serve as the repository of Iran’s enriched nuclear material. So too, as Russia continues its attack on Ukraine, Iran’s ally should not be allowed to engage in nuclear projects with Iran, the congressmen said.
If finalized, the nuclear agreement is expected to allow Russia to build civilian atomic reactors in Iran as part of a $10 billion deal; the Jewish Insider report said the Biden administration has agreed already to waive sanctions against it.
Several lawmakers have expressed concern about the imminent agreement, others who opposed the original 2015 nuclear deal – the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA – but some are waiting still to review the new deal’s finalized text.
Tal Heinrich is a senior correspondent for both ALL ISRAEL NEWS and ALL ARAB NEWS. She is currently based in New York City. Tal also provides reports and analysis for Israeli Hebrew media Channel 14 News.