Verum was sitting cross-legged in Felix’s garden. The day was chilly but the sun shone down upon her. It was a perfect day for some ice cream! People say that there is nothing like cold, sweet ice cream melting on your tongue on a hot summer day. Verum agreed but she added that cold, sweet ice cream on a chilly day was also quite fun!

A few minutes later, Orak rushed to the garden. He said, “Verum, your crystal ball! It’s time for news!”

Verum returned to the dorm room. She said, “The talks on Iran’s nuclear agreement have resumed in Vienna, Austria after five months. Iran is a country in the Middle East. The nuclear agreement limits various aspects of Iran’s nuclear program. This will prevent the country from building nuclear weapons that can cause mass destruction.”

“Could you give us some background information?” said Felix.

“Sure. But pay attention, it involves three US presidents and many developments! It all began in 2015 when former US President Barack Obama signed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran. This agreement also involves China, France, Germany, Russia, and the United Kingdom (UK).

As per this agreement, Iran would limit its nuclear program and in exchange, the US would lift all sanctions on Iran. Sanctions are penalties applied by one country or a group of countries to another country for disobeying or breaking the law. The US had imposed sanctions on Iran in 1979.”

“However, after President Donald Trump came to power, he pulled out of the deal in 2018 and reinstated the sanctions,” added Verum, “In return, Iran violated the terms of the agreement. For instance, Iran started enriching uranium to higher levels than the agreement allowed. If enriched to a high level, uranium can be used to develop nuclear weapons. That’s why this violation has been a concern for the US, however, Iran insists its program is peaceful.”

“The present US President Joe Biden is interested in rejoining the deal but on a condition: Iran must reverse the ways in which it has breached the agreement since 2019. And of course, follow the conditions of the agreement in the future,” said Verum.

“It’s a simple ask,” said Felix.

“Not exactly. Iran wants the US to first lift sanctions,” continued Verum, “So, hopefully, the two sides will reach an agreement in Vienna. If not, the US has warned that it’ll be forced to look for other options. Experts say this means it will ask Israel, another Middle-eastern country and Iran’s rival, to launch military and cyber attacks.

However, even as the talks are going on, Iran has continued enriching its uranium.”

“But there is a slight problem. Iran has refused to meet the US. So, the European Union (EU) is chairing the talks with other countries participating,” concluded Verum.