Foreign Policy: Iran caught breaching nuke sanctions to further work at Arak

 

A report published by Foreign Policy on Monday indicating that Tehran was caught breaching sanctions in order to advance its plutonium work is likely to deepen concerns in Washington at a time when the administration’s handling of the negotiations has been called into question by lawmakers on Capitol Hill. The Foreign Policy story specifically reported that the Iranians had been found to be “increasing their efforts to illicitly obtain equipment for the IR-40 research reactor at the Arak nuclear complex.” House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.) released a statement Monday afternoon in response to the Foreign Policy scoop, citing “multiple reports that Iran has violated its commitment to freeze its nuclear program” and noting that “[t]he wheels seem to be coming off of the Administration’s Iran strategy.” Tehran has on multiple occasions been found to have cheated on its obligations since the Joint Plan of Action (JPA) was signed last year, and the Foreign Policy report was met with something short of incredulity – The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg tweeted that the idea that “Iran might be engaged in nuclear cheating” was “[i]ncredibly not surprising.” Veteran Associated Press reporter Matt Lee told State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki on Monday that the Iranians “seem to be doing everything they can to destroy any trust that there might be, and it seems a bit disingenuous to claim that they're doing everything, that they're complying with everything if in fact you suspect that they're not with the JPOA or with the original UN sanctions.” Administration officials had in the months after the interim agreement was inked in November 2013 issued a series statements voicing support for sanctions legislation in the event that Tehran was found to be cheating – Secretary of State John Kerry told members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee in December 2013 that if Iran cheated “we will be the first ones to come to [Congress] if this fails to ask you for additional sanctions.”

 

 UNESCO – United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization has announced the municipality a member of the Creative Cities Network. Tel Aviv – recognized in the field of Media Arts – joins 41 other cities each recognized in one of seven categories: Literature, Film, Music, Craft and Folk Art, Design, Media Arts and Gastronomy. Other notable members include Dublin (Literature), Liverpool (Music), Sydney (Film) and Berlin (Design). “Ten years ago, UNESCO declared the White City of Tel Aviv as a world heritage site. The world recognized the importance of the city’s architectural past. Starting from today, Tel Aviv’s entrance to UNESCO’s Creative Cities Network, UNESCO reflects the world’s recognition of the city’s contribution to the present and the future – recognition of Tel Aviv as a vibrant center of cultural creation and breakthrough technology, the creative industries and the focus of the original visionary scene of digital innovation and initiatives,” said Mayor Ron Huldai. (via Israel21c)


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