But the demand that Iran suspend the enrichment of nuclear material was never part of the fuel swap deal, and indeed the whole point of the fuel swap deal was to deescalate tensions around Iran’s growing stockpile of enriched uranium without recourse to the politically unachievable demand that Iran suspend enrichment of uranium. Everyone involved in the diplomacy knows that “suspension of enrichment” crosses a red line for the Iranians, so saying that the deal is no good because it doesn’t require Iran to suspend the enrichment of uranium is like saying the deal is no good because it doesn’t require Iranian leaders to eat pork on Iranian TV at noon during Ramadan.
The main difference between the deal Iran has just agreed to and the U.N.-drafted version, AP reports, is that if Iran does not receive the fuel rods for its medical research reactor within a year, Turkey will be required to “quickly and unconditionally” return the uranium to Iran. Iran had feared that under the initial U.N. deal, if a swap fell through, its uranium stock could be seized permanently. If the West is operating in good faith, then this difference between the agreements shouldn’t matter.