Iran prepared to negotiate aspects of nuclear program, foreign minister says
Ed Pilkington, The Guardian — September 29, 2013
During an ABC interview on Sunday, Iran’s foreign minister stated that the country would be prepared to negotiate over aspects of it’s uranium enrichment and agree to surprise inspections under specific circumstances. It would not, however, be prepared to negotiate over Iran’s basic right to enrich uranium.
Duelling Narratives in Iran after Breakthrough in U.S. Relations
Michael Schwirtz and David E. Sanger, New York Times — September 29, 2013
Comments by Iran’s foreign minister on Sunday that there was a “real chance” to reach an agreement over Iran’s nuclear program with the United States were overshadowed by his deputy’s comments to hardliners in Iran reassuring them that the US will never be fully trusted. This dual narrative coming from Tehran highlights the problematic nature of rapprochement between the two countries
Colliding Interests between Iran and US show challenges to advancing dialogue
Associated Press — September 30, 2013
Despite the breakthrough in U.S.-Iranian relations in the past week, a number of divergent geostrategic interests remain between the two countries in the Middle East. These differences will prove challenging to overcome if any further progress is to be made on Iran’s enrichment program. Here are some of these major differences which range from Syria to Afghanistan.
U.S. Aims to Ease Doubts on Iran Talks
Jay Solomon & Carol E. Lee, Wall Street Journal — September 29, 2013
President Obama will attempt to gain domestic and international support for his ongoing diplomatic efforts with Iran this week. Domestically, he faces a congress favoring more stringent sanctions on the country while internationally, he faces a number of Middle Eastern countries, among them Israel, that doubt the sincerity of Iran’s recent diplomatic actions.
Driving Iran’s change: Economic threats, strategic opportunities
William Maclean & Marcus George, Reuters — September 30, 2013
Iran’s recent change of course towards diplomacy with the West has been the result of economic effects of sanctions and the geopolitical situation within the wider Middle East. This current situation presents a key juncture for an end of decades of mistrust and enmity.
Israeli President says all options are on Iran after visit to World Court
Associated Press — September 30, 2013
Israeli President Shimon Peres has stated that all options against Iran, including a military strike, are currently being considered should the latter continue it’s progress on developing a nuclear arms capabilities.
Syria’s Assad vows to comply with U.N. resolution
Ryan Lucas, Associated Press — September 29, 2013
In an interview with an italian news broadcaster, President Assad stated in clear terms that he was prepared to abide by the recently passed UN resolution calling for the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapon stockpile and, furthermore, join the international Chemical Weapons Convention
Inspectors explain how they plan to halt Syria’s ability to manufacture chemical weapons
Associated Press — September 29, 2013
Last week the UN Security Council ordered the complete destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile by mid-2014. Here is a brief description of how the designated weapons inspectors will achieve this goal; a goal whose timeline many see as unrealistic.
China Ban on Items for Nuclear Use to North Korea May Stall Arms Bid
Jane Perlez, New York Times — September 29, 2013
China has decided to restrict a number of technical and chemical exports to North Korea out of fear that they could be used to further the latter’s nuclear weapons program. The move will severely hamper North Korea, a country that receives the majority of its nuclear weapons material from its northern neighbor.