As Congress grapples with the merits of the Obama administration’s proposed nuclear deal with Iran ahead of the self imposed 60 day window, a new report has surfaced casting considerable doubt on the ability of the IAEA to have effective inspections. In a report for the AP, George Jahn confirms after a review of the relevant documents that one of the various previously undisclosed “side deals” between the IAEA and Iran allows for Iran to effectively police themselves as part of the non-proliferation agreement. AP:
Iran will be allowed to use its own inspectors to investigate a site it has been accused of using to develop nuclear arms, operating under a secret agreement with the U.N. agency that normally carries out such work, according to a document seen by The Associated Press.
All IAEA member countries must give the agency some insight into their nuclear programs. Some are required to do no more than give a yearly accounting of the nuclear material they possess. But nations— like Iran — suspected of possible proliferation are under greater scrutiny that can include stringent inspections.
The agreement in question diverges from normal procedures by allowing Tehran to employ its own experts and equipment in the search for evidence of activities it has consistently denied — trying to develop nuclear weapons.
Incredibly, the arrangement for exclusively Iranian led inspections, farcical as they would be, don’t extend to areas which have a “military significance.” As more details emerge from these agreements, Congress is increasingly turning against them. Two high profile Democratic Senators, Senator Schumer who is next in line for leadership, and Senator Menendez who is ranking member of the Foreign Relations Committee, have already come out in opposition to the deal.
Whether more Democrats will join in opposition is unclear, and the deal’s fate remains uncertain.
Arizona Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake are already on record opposing the Iranian deal, and today’s developments are likely to affirm, not change, their positions.