Iran Deal Remains Close Despite Stalled Talks

Terror listing of Revolutionary Guard is last big issue

The Iran nuclear deal remains, as ever, well within reach according to those familiar with the situation. The difficult question at this point is whether anyone is properly reaching, or if talks are totally stalled.

That’s not a question so easily answered. The US and Iran are primary parties right now, but the two sides never meet to talk. Instead, their dealing is done indirectly through EU negotiators. EU negotiators are still there, but what’s happening behind the scenes is anyone’s guess.

Iran says the “ball is in the US’s court,” while US media is claiming that the one real issue left is the question of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) getting removed from the US terror blacklist.

A few weeks ago, reports were that the IRGC matter would be a side deal announced concurrently with, but separate from, the nuclear pact. More recently, Iran suggested that the two deals should not get tangled up as they didn’t want to see the issue delay things.

It doesn’t seem anything is settled on the matter, but it sure is slowing things up. The US reportedly is resisting any sanctions relief to the IRGC even if they’re off the blacklist. Iran talked of keeping the matter separate but is also said to be holding it up as a “red line.”

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.