On Sunday 24 November, the Islamic Republic of Iran and the member-states of the Group 5+1 (the five permanent UN Security Council members plus Germany) struck an historic deal providing Iran with approximately $7 billion in relief from international sanctions in exchange for Iranian curbs on uranium enrichment and other nuclear activity.
While this agreement is undoubtedly an historic diplomatic coup for the Western diplomacy, the interim Geneva deal remains limited, covering a 6 month period only at this stage and is intended as a first step in a process aimed at a permanent resolution to the global impasse over Iran's nuclear programme.
The 6 month life of the deal is to be used to negotiate a comprehensive and permanent settlement that would allow Iran to pursue a peaceful nuclear programme, but subject to long-term limits and intrusive monitoring that would reassure the world that any covert programme could be identified and prevented before Iran could make a nuclear weapon.
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