Barring any last minute Congressional sabotage, the interim “Joint Plan of Action” on the implementation of the interim P5+1 deal with Iran is set to go into effect January 20, according to US officials.
President Obama issued a statement about how “hard it will be,” while Secretary of State John Kerry issued his own statement vowing to be super vigilant toward Iran. Both comments are likely aimed at preempting a Senate resolution that would effectively kill the deal, and which has 59 supporters already.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which is tasked with performing daily inspections of multiple sites during the interim deal, has said it expects to have to increase the number of inspectors in the country to keep up.
The implementation of the deal means the US will “unfreeze” some of the assets taken from the Iranian government years ago, with around $500 million expected to be ready to return by February 1. Russia is also in talks on a major new trade deal.
That’s unlikely to be a serious problem, and the real looming obstacle for the Iran deal remains the US Senate, where hawks are continuing to push a resolution to kill the deal, and are seeking enough votes to override a threatened presidential veto. With Israeli lobbying faction AIPAC on board for killing the talks, the vote may be extremely close.