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"Leave Iran's Missiles Out of Nuclear Talks"

A left front view of a Soviet SS-1 (SCUD-B) battlefield support missile on a launcher/erector vehicle, 1985. On 27 October 1982, Iraq launched its first Scud-Bs and strikes continued during the following years, intensifying sharply in 1985.
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"Leave Iran's Missiles Out of Nuclear Talks"

Op-Ed, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

March 16, 2014

Author: Mansour Salsabili, Former Associate, International Security Program/Project on Managing the Atom, 2013–2016; Former Research Fellow, International Security Program/Project on Managing the Atom, 2011–2013

Belfer Center Programs or Projects: International Security; Managing the Atom; Science, Technology, and Public Policy


Controversy over Iran's ballistic missile program intensified during the most recent round of talks between Iran and its six negotiating partners, the P5+1, or the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany, as the two sides disagreed over whether the topic should even be discussed. White House press secretary Jay Carney said in February that Iranians "have to deal with matters related to their ballistic missile program," but Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi rejected the notion, saying that Tehran would not discuss any issue besides nuclear matters. The subject of Iranian long-range missiles would appear to be so sensitive that it can be neither touched nor ignored.

Thus, it deserves a cautious and timely settlement. First the negotiators must take into account the Iranian missile program's raison d’être, and in so doing address Tehran's concerns. If they try to plow forward without doing so, they may end up harming the nuclear talks as a whole....

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For Academic Citation:

Salsabili, Mansour. "Leave Iran's Missiles Out of Nuclear Talks." Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, March 16, 2014.

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