How science will suffer as US pulls out of Iran nuclear deal

May 9, 2018

By Jeff Tollefson

On 8 May, US President Donald Trump announced his decision to exit the Iran nuclear deal, hampering ongoing efforts to establish scientific collaborations between researchers in the two countries. Scientists say that the move will make a bad situation worse.

Under the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran agreed to scale back its nuclear programme and allow international inspections of its facilities in exchange for the removal of economic sanctions imposed by the United States, the European Union, Britain, Russia and China. At the time, many researchers saw the agreement as an opportunity to bolster Iranian science and to expand international collaborations.

But those plans have encountered roadblocks since the 2015 deal. For example, when Trump took office last year, long-standing efforts to establish scientific exchanges between Iran and the United States came to a halt. And workshops organized by the US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) between 2010 and 2017 — meant to bolster collaborations in diverse fields including solar energy and water resource management — stopped after the Trump administration raised questions about Iran and the nuclear deal, says Glenn Schweitzer, who spearheaded the NASEM work in Washington DC.

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2 comments on “How science will suffer as US pulls out of Iran nuclear deal

  • @OP – Scientists say that the move will make a bad situation worse.

    I think it is already established, that having created bad situations, Trump’s big mouth and twitter finger, can be counted on to make them worse!

    I see he is still tying to disrupt attempts at peaceful co-operation, and destabilise the middle-East!

    US President Donald Trump and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani have traded hostile warnings, amid rising tensions between the two countries.

    Mr Trump tweeted that Iran “will suffer consequences the likes of which few throughout history have ever suffered before” if it threatened the US.

    Mr Rouhani earlier said that war with Iran would be “the mother of all wars”.

    Clearly Trump has learned nothing from the on-going conflicts, after Saddam Hussein, threatened “the mother of all battles” in Iraq!

    In May, the US left a deal which curbed Iran’s nuclear activities in return for the lifting of international sanctions.

    Washington is now re-imposing the sanctions, despite objections from the UK, France, China, Russia and Germany, who all signed the 2015 agreement.

    Another Trump tantrum at other countries “daring to threaten to retaliate”, in response to his threats to them, and his reneging on earlier agreements!
    When militaristic powers ferment civil wars and bomb or invade other people’s countries, this provides VERY good motivation for “terrorist” infiltration and retaliation against the invaders, from those who have lost friends and families in the attacks!

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