Rouhani scores big victory with Iran’s Parliament approving nuclear deal

Iran Parliament

In what could be seen as a major victory for Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani and his Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, Iran’s Parliament voted in favour of the nuclear deal with world powers. Iran and the P5+1 countries had reached an agreement on July 14 to curb Iran’s nuclear stockpile and prevent it from possessing a nuclear weapon.

The P5+1 countries is a group of six world powers, which joined together in 2006 to negotiate with Iran with regard to its nuclear programme. P5 are the five permanent members of the UN Security Council that is, China, France, Russia, United Kingdom and United States  plus Germany.

The motion to approve the nuclear deal was passed with 161 votes in favour, 59 against and 13 abstentions. The deal, which was widely seen as a diplomatic triumph worldwide, faced opposition in Iran and US. Only these two countries sought legislative approval to ratify the deal. While the US faced tough opposition from within, the deal sailed through with adequate support in the Senate to protect the agreement.

The deal between Iran and P5+1 countries ensures lifting of sanctions on Iran in return for stalling its nuclear programme. Many of the conservatives and hardliners in Iran saw the deal as Iran surrendering to the West. Iran’s economy, which has taken a big hit ever since the sanctions were imposed, would view this legislation as crucial to restoring Iran’s economic progress. While, hardliners in Iran and US tried to scuttle the deal, the deal managed to get through the Parliament of Iran and US Congress, which vindicates the diplomatic victory of the deal.

With Iran securing Parliamentary approval, the agreement will formally be adopted this month and come into force in early 2016. Iran could see its sanctions lifted by January 2016. Many people opposed to the deal in the US view this as an opportunity for Iran to misuse its additional inflow of capital to support terror in the region. Saudi Arabia, which is opposed to Iran, believes this deal will encourage Iran to create further instability in the region by supporting radical outfits.

The parliamentary vote paves the way for limited access to inspections of military sites and interviews with nuclear scientists, which is part of the deal. There may be no immediate impact on the lives of the people as the economic dividends could be reaped once sanctions are eased on Iran.

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