(PatriotWise.com)- In a statement to Congress late last week, Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that the United States would not prevent Russia from cashing in on a $10 billion contract to build out Iran’s nuclear infrastructure elements.
As part of his testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Blinken acknowledged publicly for the first time that the Biden administration would not stand in the way of nuclear cooperation between Russia and Iran. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has urged Blinken to guarantee that sanctions against Iran and Russia will remain in place as long as Russia continues its unprovoked war in Ukraine. Blinken has responded positively.
As part of a new nuclear agreement, Blinken stated that any sanctions eased as part of that agreement will be distinct from the United States’ current pressure campaign against Russia, implying that the $10 billion transactions between Tehran and Moscow will be allowed to proceed.
According to Blinken, the steps that Russia would take according to the agreement, assuming that the contract is reinstated, would not violate the sanctions placed on Russia due to its actions in Ukraine.
As part of the ongoing negotiations with Iran on a revised nuclear deal — which Russia is leading on the United States’ behalf — the Biden administration committed to lifting sanctions that prevent Tehran from paying Moscow at least $10 billion to construct nuclear reactors the country. The negotiations are currently underway. According to Republican lawmakers, the capitulation undercuts the international community’s efforts to isolate Russia in response to the country’s ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
In a statement to the Free Beacon following Blinken’s testimony, Issa stated that the Biden administration is so eager for a deal with Iran that they’re willing to broker a $10 billion payout to Russia and waive their sanctions to make it happen.
The Biden administration’s reliance on Russia to conduct diplomacy with the United States is concerning. Russia’s war crimes in Ukraine have enraged Republican foreign policy leaders in Congress, who want to see Moscow wholly isolated from the international community due to its actions.
It is expected that Rosatom, a leading Russian state-controlled energy company, will construct numerous nuclear projects for Iran, sanctioned by the Trump administration. As part of a series of concessions intended to pull Iran back into a nuclear agreement, the United States lifted sanctions on these projects earlier this year.
Clearly, the State Department has stated that it will not proceed to sanction these projects as part of a new nuclear agreement.
As State Department spokesperson Ned Price stated in March, “We, of course, would not punish Russian participation in nuclear programs that are part of the process of restarting full implementation of the JCPOA.”