Tags: iran | report | sanctions | diplomacy

Iran Report: Sanctions May Not Be Bolstering Diplomacy

By    |   Tuesday, 22 Aug 2017 10:32 AM

Sanctions against Iran may be backfiring instead of boosting diplomatic efforts, a panel of former senior government officials and experts said in an extensive report issued Wednesday.

The former diplomats and outside experts, working for the Iran Project, urged President Barack Obama to become more engaged in diplomatic efforts and was highly critical of American diplomacy towards Iran, reports the New York Times.

The sanctions policy, the experts concluded, has “contributed to an increase in repression and corruption within Iran” and “may be sowing the seeds of long-term alienation between the Iranian people and the United States.”

The group's report was released as Congress and the Israeli government pressure the Obama administration to put a time limit on negotiating with Iran and to further strengthen financial and oil sanctions that have already crippled Iran economically.

Thomas R. Pickering, who was one of the State Department's top-ranking career diplomats, told the Times he believes the balance between sanctions and diplomacy “has been misaligned.” He also said Obama should review covert programs against Iran, including the computer sabotage of nuclear facilities, even though the report doesn't mention the sabotage efforts.

The report also concluded that while sanctions are hurting Iran, there is no indication they have had any impact on changing Tehran's effort to develop nuclear weapons.

Despite the report, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the administration plans to stick with its current approach to dealing with Iran.

“The onus is on Iran to take the next steps and move the process forward,” she told the Times.



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Sanctions against Iran may be backfiring instead of boosting diplomatic efforts, a panel of former senior government officials and experts said in an extensive report issued Wednesday.
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