For Immediate Release: Feb. 12, 2021
Media Contacts: Kelsey Davenport, director for nonproliferation policy, (202) 463-8270 ext. 102; Daryl G. Kimball, executive director, (202) 463-8270 ext. 107
The comprehensive 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 verifiably blocked Iran’s pathways to nuclear weapons and provided incentives for Tehran to maintain a peaceful nuclear program.
Following the Trump administration’s unilateral withdrawal in May 2018 and Iranian retaliatory measures that began in 2019, however, the agreement is in jeopardy and Iran’s nuclear capacity is increasing.
U.S. President Joe Biden and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani continue to say they would like to see all parties return to full compliance with the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). But the two sides have not yet worked out an agreement on the sequencing for doing so.
To help explain what’s at stake and what needs to happen to restore compliance with the JCPOA and create conditions for follow-on talks, the ACA policy staff has produced three new factsheets:
- The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action: An Effective Verifiable Nuclear Deal
- Monitoring Iran’s Nuclear Activities: NPT and JCPOA Requirements
- Restoring the JCPOA’s Nuclear Limits
For a more in-depth analysis of how the Biden administration can stabilize the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, see the January 2021 Arms Control Association report, Nuclear Challenges for the New U.S. Presidential Administration: The First 100 Days and Beyond.
Promptly and simultaneously restoring U.S. and Iranian compliance with the JCPOA would help stabilize the current situation and preventing a new nuclear crisis in the region.
A return to full compliance with the nuclear deal would provide a platform for further negotiations on a long-term framework to address Iran's nuclear program and create space to engage with Iran on other areas of concern, such as regional tensions and the ballistic missile program of Iran and other states in the Middle East.