The Biden administration will reportedly lift certain energy sanctions on Russia to comply with the forthcoming renegotiated Iran nuclear deal.
What are the details?
The revived Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, otherwise known as the Iran nuclear deal, includes American concessions negotiated by the Biden administration that immunize Moscow from certain sanctions deployed on Russia after its invasion of Ukraine, the Washington Free Beacon reported, citing Russian and Iranian documents.
Specifically, the new deal will allow Rosatom, Russia’s top state-controlled energy company, to “cash in on a $10 billion contract” to help Tehran expand its Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant, according to the Free Beacon. Bushehr is one of the most controversial nuclear sites in Iran.
Thus, the new JCPOA establishes a “sanctions evasion hub” providing Russian companies with money, essentially counteracting energy sanctions deployed after Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine.
A State Department official confirmed to the Free Beacon the U.S. will “not sanction Russian participation in nuclear projects that are part of resuming full implementation of the JCPOA.”
“The United States will take actions as necessary to ensure that U.S. sanctions do not apply to the implementation of JCPOA nuclear-related projects and activities by non-U.S. individuals and entities,” the official explained. “Perhaps it is now clear to Moscow that, as we have said publicly, the new Russia-related sanctions are unrelated to the JCPOA and should not have any impact on its implementation.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry also confirmed the development.
“Additions were made to the text of the future agreement on #JCPOA restoration to ensure that all the JCPOA-related projects, esp. with Russian participation, as well as Bushehr NPP, are protected from negative impact of anti-Russian restrictions by US & EU,” the ministry’s Vienna mission said on Twitter.
The U.S. is also lifting sanctions on Iran.
As part of the deal, the U.S. will lift economic sanctions on Tehran that prevented the country from accessing funds held in South Korean and Japanese banks. Unfreezing the funds will allow Iran to pay Russia for working on its nuclear program.
Additionally, Axios reported the U.S. is considering removing Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps from terrorist lists. The IRCG is known to fund terrorism against the U.S. and its allies across the Middle East.
Republican lawmakers have been extremely critical of Biden’s administration for renegotiating the JCPOA over fears the U.S. would give up too many concessions.
Unfortunately, those fears will probably be realized once the deal is finalized.
In fact, Mikhail Ulyanov, Russia’s lead negotiator, recently bragged that Moscow, Tehran, and Beijing essentially took the U.S. to the cleaners in getting what they wanted from the deal at the expense of America.
“I am absolutely sincere in this regard. Iran got much more than it could expect — much more,” Ulyanov said. “Realistically speaking, Iran got more than frankly I expected, others expected. This is a matter of fact.”