Secret exemptions given to Iran after nuclear deal

Sep 01, 2016, 5:38 AM EDT
(Source: U.S.Embassy Vienna/flickr)
(Source: U.S.Embassy Vienna/flickr)

According to a report by the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security, the U.S. and its negotiating partners allowed “secret” exemptions that apparently favored Iran after it signed a landmark nuclear deal last year. The report, which is based on inputs from several officials of governments involved in the negotiations, is scheduled to be published on Thursday.

One of the exemptions allowed Iran to stock more low-enriched uranium (L.E.U.) in its nuclear facilities than the limits permitted by the deal, reports Reuters. Had such exemptions not been granted to Iran, its nuclear facilities would have failed to comply with the deal by January 16 deadline when the lifting of sanctions was scheduled to begin.

The revelation follows an earlier statement by the White House, which dismissed claims of any loopholes in the Iran deal, writes Fox News. David Albright, president of Institute for Science and International Security, said that President Barack Obama informed Congress of the exemptions through confidential documents sent on January 16.  

Critics of the nuclear deal say that the alleged exceptions, if proved, will set a wrong precedent, encouraging Iran to seek additional waivers in future. Democratic Senator Bob Menendez, a leading critic of the Iran deal and a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said that he wasn’t briefed about any such exemptions.