Iran’s President Faces Pushback From Parliament Over IAEA Deal

IAEA said they can continue 'necessary verification' for up to three months

In reaction to an agreement between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the government of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Iran’s parliament denounced the deal as “illegal.”

Starting Tuesday, Iran was set to stop voluntarily complying with the Additional Protocol, which allows the IAEA to conduct snap inspections. But the IAEA and Iran reached a deal on Sunday that satisfied the nuclear watchdog. The IAEA said the agreement will allow it to conduct “necessary verification and monitoring activities for up to three months.”

Details of the deal are not exactly clear, but one aspect is that Iran will withhold video footage of certain nuclear facilities from the IAEA. If the US lifts sanctions before three months, the IAEA will be granted access to the recordings. If not, the footage will be destroyed.

Scrapping the Additional Protocol was required by a law passed by Iran’s parliament in December in the wake of the assassination of Mohsen Fakrizadeh, the Iranian scientist who was killed in an apparent Israeli attack. The parliament wants Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to be held accountable for what it sees as a failure to comply with the law.

On Monday, Iran’s parliament voted overwhelmingly to send a report to Iran’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission on the IAEA deal. The report says the agreement is a “clear violation” of the law passed in December.

Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, the speaker of Iran’s parliament, said any cooperation with the IAEA beyond the Safeguards Agreement of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is “illegal.” The number of IAEA inspectors in Iran was not set to change under the law, and inspections will still happen as part of the NPT.

Whatever happens with the Additional Protocol, if the US lifts sanctions, Iran will reverse any steps it has taken.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the assistant news editor of Antiwar.com, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.