Accession Number:

ADA599370

Title:

Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Descriptive Note:

Congressional rept.

Corporate Author:

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2014-03-05

Pagination or Media Count:

78.0

Abstract:

A priority of Obama Administration policy has been to reduce the perceived threat posed by Iran to a broad range of U.S. interests. Well before Irans nuclear issue rose to the forefront of U.S. concerns about Iran in 2003, the United States had seen Irans support for regional militant groups, such as Lebanese Hezbollah, as efforts to undermine U.S. interests and allies. To implement U.S. policy, the Obama Administration has orchestrated broad international economic pressure on Iran to try to compel it to verifiably demonstrate to the international community that its nuclear program is for purely peaceful purposes. That pressure harmed Irans economy, created Iranian domestic sentiment for a negotiated nuclear settlement that would produce an easing of international sanctions, and paved the way for the June 2013 election of the relatively moderate Hassan Rouhani as president of Iran. Three rounds of subsequent multilateral talks with Iran achieved a November 24, 2013, interim agreement Joint Plan of Action that halts the expansion of Irans nuclear program in exchange for modest and temporary sanctions relief. Subsequent negotiations led to a decision to implement the JPA beginning January 20, 2014, and that mutual implementation has proceeded as planned. A framework for talks on the permanent resolution were agreed between Iran and the six negotiating powers on February 20, 2014. Rouhani s election has also improved prospects for an end to the 34 years of U.S.-Iran estrangement. On September 27, 2013, President Obama and Rouhani spoke by phone the first leadership level contacts since the 1979 Islamic revolution as Rouhani departed a week-long visit to the U.N. General Assembly meetings in New York. In their speeches to the Assembly, both President Obama and Rouhani indicated that the long era of U.S.-Iran hostility could be ended.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE