Iran talks on track


Talks in which America is involved on Iran’s nuclear program and economic sanctions are proceeding, despite opposition to their success.

The seven-nation talks began with a temporary agreement in January that placed limits on Iran’s development of its nuclear program. Iran insists the program has only peaceful goals and does not seek eventual nuclear weapons capacity. In return, some financial sanctions on Iran were relaxed.

The International Atomic Energy Agency is inspecting Iranian facilities and monitoring Iran’s compliance with the preliminary deal, which expires July 20. The partial relaxation of sanctions has not greatly improved Iran’s staggering economy, but European, American and other investors are paying attention and watching progress in the talks.

Some U.S. lawmakers risked torpedoing the talks by rejecting Iran’s nomination of an ambassador to the United Nations for his minor role in the 1979 hostage-taking at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. The Obama Administration denied a visa to the nominee, even though the U.N. receives many delegations, including Cubans, North Koreans, and Syrians in Bashar Assad’s government.

Iran appears willing to maintain the negotiations anyway. The next meeting is scheduled for May 13, at which formal writing of the accord may begin.

The Iran talks seem to be proceeding acceptably. The United States cannot afford to let them get off track.