American Faith leaders call on Biden to return to JCPOA

A group of faith leaders in the United States called on President Joe Biden to pursue an expeditious return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, according to a FCNL report.

According to Iran news agency the statement was led by the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) and signed by a broad coalition of faith leaders and heads of faith-based organizations, including Protestant, Catholic, Evangelical, and Jewish leaders, as well as national heads of communion for multiple Christian denominations and the president of the National Council of Churches, FCNL reported.

“We are deeply concerned by recent news reports suggesting that negotiations between Iran and the United States on a return to the JCPOA are on the verge of collapse, heightening the risk of war and nuclear proliferation. We strongly urge the Biden administration to remain at the negotiating table and have the courage to act boldly for peace,” the statement said.

The statement underscored benefits of the Iran nuclear deal as a tool of nuclear nonproliferation, as a means to prevent war, and as a moral act to end the humanitarian suffering caused by broad-based sanctions.

It also called on Biden and his administration to recognize that “progress requires negotiation and compromise, not threats and intimidation".

“The Biden administration should act urgently and seize the opportunity to prevent a war with Iran. Quakers, people of faith, and peace advocates around the country are calling on President Biden to recommit to the path of diplomacy and rejoin the Iran nuclear deal,” said Bridget Moix, FCNL’s General Secretary.

“The United States government must prioritize diplomatic efforts in order to ensure conflicts are resolved in a peaceful and comprehensive manner,” said Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon, Executive Director of Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP).

Iran and six world powers reached an agreement in 2015 to put some limitations on Iran’s nuclear deal, in return of lifting American and international sanctions against Iran.

The US left the deal in 2018, while the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the only qualified body to verify Iran’s compliance with the deal, had confirmed in over a dozen of quarterly reports that Iran was in full compliance.

Iran and the remained parties began a series of negotiations for a possible return of the US to the JCPOA, as Biden had promised during his campaigning.

However, US has yet to accept it should remove all sanctions imposed after its pull-out of the deal, as Iran insists the situation should return to the conditions before US withdrawal.

News ID 193970


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