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Backgrounder: What to know about the upcoming P5+1-Iran summit
13 April, 2012
he Iranian nuclear program is one o the most polarizing issues acingthe international community since its public disclosure in 2002. Overthe past decade, the program has signicantly expanded and tensionsover it have continually increased. Both Israel and the United States have de-clared that Iran will not be permitted to produce a nuclear weapon and that “alloptions are on the table” to prevent it rom doing so.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned the world that Israel’s “window o opportunity” or successul military action against the Iranian nuclear program is slowly clos-ing. Mr. Netanyahu views the Iranian nuclear program as an existential threat to the Stateo Israel and believes that the current sanctions regime, while painul, has yet to aect theprogram.
President Obama has sought to dissuade Israel rom attacking Iran beore diplomacy hasbeen attempted and as a result,sanctions have been tightened. Mr. Obama told the Ameri-can Israel Public Aairs Committee at their most recent meeting that, “For the sake o Israel’ssecurity, America’s security, and the peace and security o the world, now is not the time orbluster.”
Te President believes that Israeli military action may destabilize the region andsuch actions would embolden the current Iranian regime.Increased tensions stemming rom a November 2011 IAEA report, which detail Iranian work on nuclear weapons research, and ears o military action has driven up oil prices; romroughly $80 a barrel beore the report to a height o $110 a barrel last month.
Heightenedtensions and the start o spring and summer driving seasons has increased the national aver-age price o gasoline to $3.93 a gallon, nearing the mythical $4.00 a gallon mark.
As the rhetoric continues, sanctions levied against Iran are widening and their impact isgreater than ever. Headlined by the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Di-vestment Act (CISADA) and the more recent Section 1245 o the 2012 National Deense Authorization Act (NDAA), sanctions have been exceptionally eective at reducing Iran’s oilexports and isolating it rom the international banking system.
SWIF, a global banking communications rm, recently cut o 30 Iranian banks rom itssystem, making international monetary transers increasingly dicult.
Tis will complicateIran’s repatriation o billions o dollars in international oil sales and other nancial dealings,