Politico’s foreign affairs correspondent Nahal Toosi tweeted Friday morning: “NEW: Senior Biden admin official tells me, ‘We are studying Iran’s response but the bottom line is that it is not at all encouraging.’” Toosi added a teeth-gritting emoji.
NEW: Senior Biden admin official tells me, “We are studying Iran’s response but the bottom line is that it is not at all encouraging.” ? https://t.co/NvPRWdslhD
— Nahal Toosi (@nahaltoosi) September 1, 2022
Earlier, on Thursday night, Toosi wrote: “The negative reaction from the Biden administration — as well as European sources — suggests that a revival of the 2015 nuclear agreement is not imminent as some supporters of the deal had hoped, despite roughly a year and a half of talks.” He also cited a European diplomat who said the Iranian response looked “negative and not reasonable.” Another person close to the talks told Toosi the Iranian reply did “not look good at all.”
The United States is “slamming it as a ‘not at all encouraging’ step ‘backwards,’” he concluded.
Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nasser Kan’ani announced on Friday: “After receiving the United States’ response, expert team of the Islamic Republic of Iran examined it carefully and Iran’s responses were compiled and submitted to the EU Coordinator tonight.”
The Guardian pointed out that the Biden administration gave the Iranian response a “provisional, but abrupt, thumbs down” minutes after Washington and the EU received it. “We can confirm that we have received Iran’s response through the EU,” a state department spokesman said. “We are studying it and will respond through the EU, but unfortunately it is not constructive.”
So far, no one in the media knows what was in the Iranian response that so discouraged the Biden administration and the Europeans – who appeared only a few days ago so eager to sign the damned thing and move on with their lives. Friday morning’s Iranian response was a response to a draft from the US that followed an Iranian draft from August 15, which in turn answered a US and EU draft from August 8.
Prime Minister Yair Lapid spoke on Wednesday with President Joe Biden regarding the emerging nuclear agreement between Iran and the major powers, and Biden stressed his commitment to Israel’s security and to making sure Iran will never obtain nuclear weapons.
Mossad Chief David Barnea is expected to travel to Washington next week to discuss the pending nuclear deal with the Senate Secret Services Committee. Barnea’s trip was scheduled before the US started sounding positive notes about the deal, and certainly before those notes went sour this morning.