Secretary of State John Kerry has a new task: Getting Congress to back the proposed Iran nuclear deal.
On Thursday, an outline of what may become the deal between the United States, Iran, and other world powers—Great Britain, Germany, China, Russia and France—to limit Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief was released.
Kerry addressed critics of the Iran deal in an interview with ABC News, stating that they “don’t have an alternative.”
“This is the most extreme and intrusive inspection structure of an arms control agreement. We have entirely new mechanisms to be able to gain access, to be able to inspect, to hold accountable what is happening in the years ahead. Those people who criticize it like that, they don't have an alternative,” Kerry said.
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The proposed deal would put restrictions on Iran, including dismantling two-thirds of its centrifuges, restricting its enrichment capacity, and monitoring its nuclear sites and supply chain, reports The Hill.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a longstanding critic of the deal, took to Twitter to display his unhappiness with the proposal.
Netanyahu said it is a “bad deal that would endanger Israel, Middle East and the peace of the world.”
Opponents in Congress include House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas).
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Potential Presidential Candidate Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said he would dismantle any Iran deal his first day in office if elected as President of the United States, even if the country’s allies opposed him, Opposing Views reports.
Kerry urged lawmakers to “look at the facts” in an interview with CBS News State Department correspondent Margaret Brennan, embedded below.
"Look at the access we will have to their nuclear facilities, the tracking of their uranium, the oversight of their promises that they have made with respect to this, the accountability we will have," Kerry said.
The critics argument that Iran has a long history of keeping hidden its nuclear facilities from international inspectors does not hold up any longer, according to Kerry, because they will no longer be able to do that under the deal.
"We have a whole new system that we designed and that they accepted and worked on to absolutely answer that question. So that we now have a guaranteed access," Kerry said. "If they don't provide it, the sanctions come back."
Congress has discussed imposing new sanctions on Iran and Kerry urges them to not do so as it is “unnecessary.”
"New sanctions now would clearly be unnecessary, given what we've been able to achieve and yes, it would have a profoundly negative impact on this," Kerry said. "It would be highly irresponsible to simply break this apart by now stepping in the middle when the measure of this agreement, I believe, can stand the test of scrutiny."
There is still a possibility that the deal will fall apart, and Kerry admitted as much in his ABC interview.
"Of course it could,” Kerry said. “What we did was open a window to a possibility."
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