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Israel, former intelligence chief calls on Trump to uphold Iranian nuclear deal

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Jerusalem (AsiaNews) – US President Donald Trump must not end the Iranian nuclear deal (the JCPOA), at least not now, and reserve the “threat” of a “retreat” to a “more strategic moment” when there is greater “contractual strength”, writes Amos Yadlin, former head of Israeli military intelligence, for over 40 years in the Army and now executive director of the Tel Aviv University Institute of National Security Studies.

Even in Israel, like in many western chancelleries and international NGOs, there those who call on the White House to keep faith with the historical agreement reached in July 2015, and which allows Tehran to continue to use nuclear energy for civilian purposes.

Any attempt by the United States to “improve” the conditions imposed on Iran, says Yadlin, requires “support from Europe, not to mention Russia and China.” In essence, the former military chief and strategist does not openly blame Trump’s reservations on the deal, but is convinced that at the moment “conditions and timing” to shelve it are “wrong”.

He suggests to the United States and the West to use the “calculated risk” policy with Iran to further improve and extend the agreement between 2023 and 2025 just before the end of the restrictions placed on Iran. “Improving the agreement,” he writes, “is a goal which should be strongly pursued in the medium and long term, but only after creating the conditions of international pressure on Iran to cause it to accept the offered restrictions.”

If Washington tries “to force Iran into improved conditions now, it would lack European backing, let alone backing from Russia and China”. Lastly, Yadlin declares that he appreciates the strong line adopted by Trump against Iran, wanting to include “terrorism” and “support provided by Tehran” in the Middle East region in the future (re) negotiations on the nuclear issue.

The Director-General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano has also intervened on the issue, confirming that Iran is respecting all the points envisaged in the 2015 agreement. Trump’s allegations, therefore, according to the top expert in the matter underlines that “the commitments [by Tehran]”have all been “implemented”. Speaking at a conference dedicated to nuclear safety, Amano also recalls that Iran is subject to the most “rigorous scrutiny regime in the world”.

EU foreign policy representative Federica Mogherini, has also defended the deal recalling that the Jcpoa “wrote the end of one of the worst nuclear crises of our time.” “We have the interest, responsibility and duty – to continue – to preserve the nuclear agreement with Iran, to work to strengthen and not weaken non-proliferation.”

In a phone call with Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu British Prime Minister Theresa May underlined how the agreement “neutralized” the possibility that Tehran would endorse the use of atomic weapons. The UK government, concludes the note, “remains firmly committed to the deal, which is vital for regional security.”

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