The 15 members that make up the United Nations Security Council voted in favor of adopting a deal between Iran and major world powers that intends to limit Iran’s nuclear ability, in exchange for lifting international oil and financial sanctions.
The deal, which was called “historic” by both the European Union’s foreign policy chief and Iran’s foreign minister, was settled on Tuesday between Iran, the United States, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United Kingdom after 20 months of negotiations, four target dates and three extensions.
The Hill reported that the vote “sends a strong signal of international support for the agreement,” and that some U.S. lawmakers have criticized the Obama administration for “pushing for U.N. action before Congress has a to chance to weigh in.”
Reuters noted that the UN will be able to re-impose penalties “during the next decade if Tehran breaches the historic agreement” and that no sanctions relief can be implemented until the International Atomic Energy Agency “submits a report to the Security Council verifying that Iran has taken certain nuclear-related measures outlined in the agreement.”
U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Samantha Power said that although the deal “does not address many of our profound concerns,” it would ultimately make the world “safer and more secure.”
Power also said that if Iran “abides by the commitments” that it agreed to in the deal, then it will find both the international community and the United States “willing to provide a path out of isolation and toward greater engagement.”
The nuclear deal, also called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), will start lifting sanctions on Iran in 90 days, after the “respective capitals and legislatures have had a time to review the deal’s provisions,” according to Power.
While several members of Congress were irked at the fact that the U.N. Security Council was taking a vote on the nuclear deal before they had time to weigh in on it, Secretary of State John Kerry said that he felt it was their right to vote.
“I mean honestly, it’s presumptuous of some people to suspect that France, Russia, China, Germany and Britain ought to do what the Congress tells them to do,” Kerry said. “They’re individual countries and they have sovereignty. They’re members of the United Nations and they have a right to have a vote.”
Along with Republicans in Congress, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been very critical of the nuclear deal, calling it a “historic mistake for the world,” and saying it will not stop “Iran’s aggression.”
Beginning Monday, Congress has 60 days to review the deal’s provisions before Obama can begin removing congressional sanctions. Obama has said that he will veto any congressional legislation seeking to block the agreement.
The Hill noted that President Obama, Vice President Biden and other officials have recently begun an “aggressive lobbying push to rally Democrats,” including a “rare golf outing” over the weekend between Obama and three Democratic House lawmakers.