Mar 19 2014
Against the backdrop of the crisis in the Ukraine, talks are taking place in Vienna on the fate of Iran’s nuclear program. The P5+1 countries negotiating with Iran are the United States, Britain, China, France, Russia and Germany. Iran had agreed to a 6 month temporary accord in January to reduce uranium enrichment and other nuclear-related activities in exchange for fewer Western sanctions.
Although Iran has not brought up the political conflict in the Ukraine during the talks, analysts are concerned that the crisis could create factions among the negotiators which could impact any permanent accord on Iran’s nuclear future.
Over the last 20 years Russia and Iran have seen the increasing expansion of NATO around its borders, creating a serious distrust of Western military expansionism. Although Russia did ally itself with the US when Iran was placed under the temporary accord, the current situation in the Ukraine may alter Russia’s position on Iran.
GUEST: Reese Erlich, veteran freelance foreign correspondent who has traveled widely across the Middle East. He has written a number of books including “Conversations with Terrorists: Middle East Leaders on Politics, Violence, and Empire” and “Inside Syria: The Backstory of Their Civil War and What the World Can Expect”