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UAE’s US Envoy Urges Biden For Stronger Iran Deal

UAE’s US Envoy Urges Biden For Stronger Iran Deal

Friday, 16 April, 2021 - 05:15
UAE Ambassador to Washington Yousef Al Otaiba speaks during a conference in Abu Dhabi, January 2018 (AP)

UAE Ambassador to Washington Yousef Al Otaiba said that President Joe Biden's negotiators should use leverage gained against Iran by the previous US administration to reach a better nuclear deal with Tehran in talks in Vienna.

"You (US) are essentially in the driver's seat to get to a point to where we can address what I believe were shortcomings in JCPO," said Otaibi in a virtual discussion with Stanford University's Hoover Institution on Wednesday.

He listed the shortcomings as the deal's duration, that it did not address Iran's missiles program and support for regional proxies and that it still allowed uranium enrichment.

"Why do they get to have enrichment that can ultimately lead them to a militarized program, whereas your partners and allies ... did a nuclear program without enrichment, without reprocessing?" he said.

"Let's say you go back into JCPOA, what prevents any country in the future in the region that comes up to the US and says 'I want the same deal that the Iranians got?'," Otaiba noted.

He added: "Precedence is important. There is leverage today that you didn't have in 2015, the region looks different, the dynamics are different," he said, mentioning US-brokered deals last year that saw the UAE and Bahrain normalize ties with Israel.

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