No Americans, no Canadians. Those are the dictates from Iran when it comes to who can take part in inspections of their nuclear program under the deal Tehran negotiated with the Obama administration.
The deal, which has been slammed in Congress for having secret side deals that even Secretary of State John Kerry has not seen, apparently also excludes Yanks or Canucks from taking part, according to a report of statements from Iranian officials published by The Associated Press:
Iran will not allow American or Canadian inspectors working for the U.N. nuclear watchdog to visit its nuclear facilities, an official said in remarks broadcast by state TV on Thursday.
Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said Iran will only allow inspectors from countries that have diplomatic relations with it. The previously undisclosed remarks were made during a Sunday meeting with parliamentarians.
"American and Canadian inspectors cannot be sent to Iran," said Araghchi. "It is mentioned in the deal that inspectors should be from countries that have diplomatic relations with Islamic republic of Iran."
The United States ended diplomatic relations with Iran after the 1979 revolution, the seizing of the US embassy and taking of hostages. Canada, which helped six American diplomats escape in 1979, had long acted as a conduit for American diplomacy for Iran. However, in 2012, citing espionage and subterfuge, the government of Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper cut diplomatic relations with Iran and kicked its ambassador out of the country.
Harper has been a strong critic of Iran. Reacting to the negotiated settlement with Tehran, Harper's government said Iran must be judged by its actions, not its words.
"We appreciate the efforts of the P5+1 to reach an agreement. At the same time, we will continue to judge Iran by its actions not its words. To this end, Canada will continue to support the efforts of the International Atomic Energy Agency to monitor Iran’s compliance with its commitments, Foreign Affairs Minister Rob Nicholson said in a statement on July 14, 2015.
"Iran continues to be a significant threat to international peace and security owing to the regime’s nuclear ambitions, its continuing support for terrorism, its repeated calls for the destruction of Israel, and its disregard for basic human rights. "
Nicholson said Canada will watch the agreement and hold judgment.
In addition to refusing to allow Americans or Canadians to participate in the inspections, Iran also has a 24-day period in which to comply with requests to inspect a particular site, a stipulation that critics say will allow the Islamic Republic to hide that which it does not want inspectors to see.