Russia Orders Defense from Sanctions While Iran Nuclear Discussions are Close to Caving

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The news is grim around the world: There are wars and famines (sort of), inflation, as well as other problems. Two pieces of good news can brighten our spirits.

First, Major League Baseball has released the news that the lockout was over just in time for the season to begin. Without this, we would not be able to watch the NBA summer league basketball or soccer.

The USFL, a new professional football league, may be able to distract us.

While of less import but still very encouraging, Iran and the West are on the verge of collapse due to how fast they can build their nuclear weapons.

Politico: Two diplomats claim Iran’s nuclear negotiations could collapse due to Russian demands for sanctions protection.

Diplomats claim negotiations are stuck because of Russian demands. This could hinder the revival of 2015’s landmark agreement, under which Iran had lowered its nuclear ambitions in exchange for sanctions relief.

Russia is determined to make sure that any accord that is returned includes assurances that any future Russian business dealings will be exempted from U.S and EU sanctions. Moscow is responding to the harsh sanctions it faces for its invasion of Ukraine.

The final draft is now available for signing. Russia will not be allowed to leave the EU by entering into a backdoor agreement with Iran.

Diplomats said that negotiators from the other world powers involved in the negotiations, which included the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, and senior EU diplomats couldn’t agree on a solution to the problem. Iran seems eager to sign the agreement considering the potential income it would get from oil exports and the need for sanctions relief.

The U.S. and EU have struggled to find a way to please Russia in order to allow Iran to acquire the most highly enriched form of uranium (HEU) at least temporarily. Russia seeks to lift sanctions and allow trade with Iran.

Moscow is concerned about Iran’s potential oil influx onto the market after a restored nuclear deal. This would create more competition for Russian oil, and reduce energy prices. This could allow the West, in response to Russia’s attack on Ukraine, to impose additional sanctions against Russia.

It is possible to strike a deal with Russia. It is possible to reach a deal without Russia.

Iran may view the delay as suspicious — something they are skilled in doing. However, their motivation to end the sanctions system remains strong. This could allow the West and Russia to make the concessions needed to reach a settlement.