‘I don’t think the Iranians want it’ – UK intel chief on nuclear deal

“I’m skeptical that the supreme leader will go for the deal,” said Richard Moore, head of the U.K.’s M6 intelligence agency.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

The head of the U.K.’s M6 foreign intelligence agency said during a security conference last Thursday that he was “skeptical” that Tehran genuinely wishes to reenter a deal aimed at curbing their nuclear development program.

“I’m skeptical that the supreme leader will go for the deal,” Richard Moore told a CNN reporter at the Aspen Security Forum.

“I think the deal absolutely is on the table and the European powers and the and the administration here are very, very clear on that, and I don’t think that the Chinese and Russians on this issue would block it. But I don’t think the Iranians want it.”

Moore’s pessimistic comments come after Biden administration officials have acknowledged that the likelihood Iran will reenter the deal is slim. U.S. Special Envoy for Iran Robert Malley recently told CNN that the chance of Iran agreeing to a viable deal “diminishes by the day.”

The window for Iran to accept the terms of an agreement that would see it agree to stop its nuclear program “is closing quite rapidly,” he said, adding that “at some point, I think it’ll become obvious to everyone that the deal is no longer available.”

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However, Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland expressed hope at the conference that Tehran would eventually agree to a deal.

Framing the stalled talks as a neutral event, she noted that Iranian officials “haven’t thrown over the table yet” and “they haven’t walked away when they could have done that over these many months where the deal has been ready and sitting there.”

Reports have indicated that Iran is ramping up its nuclear development, and specifically uranium enrichment efforts, during the time that the talks have stagnated.

Some Israeli officials have posited that Iran did not enter the negotiations in good faith, instead using the discussions to buy time to further accelerate their nuclear program.