Iran Sanctions Lifted over Nuclear Deal

JFIF;CREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v62), quality = 80 C   %# , #&')*)-0-(0%()(C   ((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((( " }!1AQa"q2#BR$3br %&'()*456789:CDEFGHIJSTUVWXYZcdefghijstuvwxyz w!1AQaq"2B #3Rbr $4%&'()*56789:CDEFGHIJSTUVWXYZcdefghijstuvwxyz ?|>HuYGW5f(9CBBH(#*E*Ԋ)i)*@*^hي5P1B 5*T/4XTX,ӣJoiD+).qW.)/0!*apJJ,zRtT%jh%@mFMP[R5=)UnW+ZhOB~jLh|h/'5cg$ mm"QAx(7b%`Rb B)1N"ʹ{Znڣb[RJQހnqJ+qK )$&)sC`KzӃ m\ T!aLR✫@N])S\|t\T`ҰqsVju”J(\@(J]*.i(Jvʜ%8'XEm*PWe!Jʻ( VBQ`):T,}ӊPJEgH6ULO.We1i @Q*}Ij1tZV^.UbYiKa௩b P[{s)O5jqih/0C^8u v1 g+"v^N+71-$ë˧Zk2G Z9Ҡ^sbkC^ C!ZJakڻ4}OOCCMQ9{֤gdk֪Z }OzpSu@V5*kQ$z*%"wUhEhUhjeJr-JLq9VJXB:&jGQ`ŚжXj?yZqE528! ^8),^2EV*zǃҀ*49Zj6h\I#.e\]_5qi u6TŁR=ҵl4B`4ZnڜBX b"m "ָ"K}0R7+s~*xL׬]T 4 N;WXđ+gy iߌg!GkS l!&Ѽc6Rg#_>-uO9ʇQgs8g?L۞-f=3K3ŤnM|n]J'sGfϢqԡ ~U jdj~:j>8gЫ ϖɤM|96cj&^8gshX#" q>~h.p?5VG?H M%Vs4:!d@G\Z~ O H9FW?V~l^j*'hYV4^t_D*O:Vyl~w=}ulgլ]x!R>t^M$6~y{%1fSq(BȩQijTZCS"")(S"B-XE!8yuM  n|4u5qNԨHZ*oslw*@^$p=ALaT y)-vi j; Hw?*Xh>'? /a%ռx4{48>NV)iv;c6s>)m[qd5RWas3h`V* E ̢ٚh"h֤ NUZz9V`JvxFR.(;0V+Q5JVe`*2UwNj@W@VLtEj7Z@QjÊАuS3>A O_qQL*i?D}Gg5rn: oV|&sV4٦y*1/:/Q7<:_P^r\3)™l`\z_ۧժME?-vQ֦1ێpK&f ҇M ʶ rT&M(#VIF~gR2֜cBi*u9ELLASƵHDa՘֩$iNڑ*!YzRf0i LZ6C *b[&Sf,eX.̱Td =[ˍNi&Op; m1^sx ٩{lU]}kڭŔ td9RcbJCNF2 [wKgk gPHyr)ej܋P8 *iBTdsSW2,bEJiy玓1J q{-9(OO 2Oxv-#5-](Upң7.))@]V*`xȥQEBiڶF*LjMN ,GrRbhRKLQC$Tf$ 쀸H(g1K |O⢬l&31j\;{_O8#3Rjv:~u u?xҡ,ϰ)a9IZ3?Q9HfZ~[/Xʸ9~U2VЊnZQVU^Z@RޯMިNiFjҢqSOTw1t۩7u5ۥ=rkϬfQNT)la0fݟM[oԑP5J\3j:3Yz l)5, 'ֳ F=s1&/==Kk t"M֥?֑%u>1Ul63ڬj7"N$i9" ȢD:EL%jkQF*bD[jYAҘ*kQ*#V4,Ӣ^*%qZ0 hV(J~T REQ}LGy'y(WBCrU?ּ5,8U%Cq%BU~e^i'\#5`EbwRѦ\@oome%OpkT%qRVҏG"CUbe \)Z{"qV]Uj\~T.*ӊA@=D3 !7ZLS LwPyTJ=阩xJx[JsaN?4yv|oL}G?A(3g "/ZzWa׭<)qK-8u#AKh=/+>D98,cP6V6@3{Pf6ms{ugRX+Uiy\bwOӭ @WZ}>؃#CRf"@ I ڎsMt ѝvY0Et V y5޾،~S /j)WoiƛIkv 8udwE?yo~ӬZ yi*w7c?:_fQ(i+Zi*EL1()Q@ɭ_T9r3C$RWIq(2csUR94K=jI7twcQ!Ц@Y{8,"8dHZq$+b5RQ -TDT cGQn@~tR'kA ךx:3&( X]$$ŗEFRF"^E85LE)TW$jR)3TfrW\V\EC1F&fT¾|7VvBI3ܤeb;#U+}*^iYSWv3u~>GQ@W$z?bb7HÓ>|V?ږu⹻հb>QBdVQ5j0a橒W Ԉ+2(5!@*t !D8(** 'UA[jZtVU0V FSƸ9 }ږ'ϴgӲ#Ơ]g_WM@_7W_ǨOks*Uq~h*,pAm,O.NGſɟgة vz׮ W#u_^^\EHʣN89(rp+\ IO>|։ЬU~Tѕ"+t 뚢WX2F'v~OS2\BD~7qܡo4d2g''*z㸪*PsQy!ZvAUiW"ޘ*Uw Iҡ~]D§qQ8$RN#塆$\ݱ1SxB-fA]dmC( Ѣ@zq i]zjj }0*z `@ߕI(}*0,֨qO ӊ V"BN}cb' %1bNhrWFNrjV~UAVqI)Pf14sHg I]fW N;~.ףe{g" H݉+鼾o=E7|Q:|樒ZF)9VEAV# 1%YT*C*xBXS@YU؅TEV""EU#pYEm KddzU8jԧ9ݷoGRƍ 1܌יQyuT >NA56̵^~d8?J|]۫Anzt5B;]*IHǖs.guJ  M3Zf1|VMos5홅rj[(8D{Ұj@Ioj ;[)Ӊ]YT9?Ju*d6 h4S4=d4g\/@ZsQҨi@K^5!\ČwE3~A9,Z@g?>/TsJ9Q(X:}" v)UpթP@=))l* L5ki7Dnbi1끚 DWd2{\M F+Xu7=>G."i$cZ^ZL沔\>f`=<(Iɖ_Qc]/ F۶Fy$=]FJE!S:ū"Ej LsJ:Ӏ搊95<> 34Woࣝ<cn}vekiB (b?^|?JiN^#xR"`L2T jd4*tSXN!ڡCSE03.jO@hwųFAVVRZ0:@%3AT`1՝(+km ³0$H+:YPrHQkCC6UpF_STq$% @zEY?՛ZnM݌pl *UF^$6;R䓰0 qfC$+>&3L13 ;q%9&NU /S@ԖrA n e:p5^]]Ɲ'FTH,waQ\Jn?[Կ *-u2y8 A4ۯItuӇ7v$̍|ⷬxDLd2N_:c5=*@"(V* D2S2UT SjXJ i,j&jf UZ_ոڨD*m@pZ23VaթqU5+pf^;)4#o"A/}@]I}Bq;K5`#.fC!lyҤf0C^ 5kFA 䌏Ҧi$d7Fp212N&ܪ:("+k=ݛ^ww#9tjL0݌gU\ "SXڎk bP\jZ$p6:&#yҡɦ3V$ ϭ>i4\s֫XM$@Umj! >n"`F(^: CR;Uw4WsRiT/R5E%DO4Hb 3!<ҨzjILjym]o\SGئu$Jּ7rk rנ ӗ1i֘-LZha L2h ju5YMJL $@qheP *4iZyftCllp ]H0aYzm{RQ\kڮkJ*_ƒvЮ&[x^W8]^=9'y8}Va8fnC/ {}o=XcTQv1!ؼX~sAh2dB֪7v\y),y+jAܶ劀vJhϚOABl<稪Vf4BCD!&GұkWEkگˆ#&#dҼ`tXȑj4jzB恑5:񇪚c-B>rW,0y溍Mc7 Q57I_v5*x=I?ΠH*zT?]9vr:\Z!cHq}|V ^]II[h 188G'ajJ*U-HDRD*U"dҫL jd5:U ,jf!1 -jMT5f# /UۑTj[`iFU#*gSr%5+ [ht}?WbQDSJ.9κ 'E ]m*7j++en5.$ Z8 VH j-[ADּh@Y$&0![IQ홉m6 MuhNCʜY^OO$d,z4/jɼFR|CiGsuls8k$-Hj͋g\5tZ~|57v&hzTLCڢt#O?_Ai?֣?7_AKs~8?t0G1\m[Ѓ]<\ݹD^Aꑇ4Ne0zJڤZjE5DRBSL RJ*T: Je NS5b6橫Tѵ04U=J$"R qYJx~:gYA B1֩M1' H wj2!ji5jB4iM4 H9M0S֓D;sU'~Z^ '~'= Z_-8R^H)NqTOSӚOhE T$AeAuKO==z46(8\ (fIN]oƋ xFYDdsI2Xj 1ƪ!m̓WZCѝ?^4lwP @O#sաnoa"84٤6"/J Mnv5e,@8̱=nz/21Ea=)ME]l hU+_ۡhfk*<Ӂ 91N NuYH^@<<ʭI$ eJN9^)'⥱%`vrMSli\:Z11&]2ZO2UqwSKTEDM-Lf#~~j[ހ-j#$k] jûQ&8?슎qOT7ҎcM=vjʊb1{u3Vg\ L6 nszK|0O\oot19sGpdߜS5&cHHԀE j%%J TM*T S)qRԪS#UU5"POU@p=;SH@d=0jҗ'.[D£ysQeM+¯VҒ`h$"TUP@_Y==JRnD!&h%-43N^&{h:V5֪|;MVuKCo187]>k>fMZiIG@@R )p*}է;}hԯnoYQLђ]{˓rvF^өڭ֛p|Y[F}\n*'KiZ=>-ǧ[bKp)ƺx&2dSUdY mlrV=>UMndK(;\+0xT$㽻 1Yulzt-n˩:9WƸ{k;m'?.xz{)dR&?|wǵ&4izS^ë/pS\lS0,oY פ͔=j]I60ϥk)܊ޣ4--6R?jm+E4&0u!@,qMp^0ūi q63M9ӓ\FdX&i4f?<Ҋfy4(&)Qfu0$Fu!jP5 &U璕O'J͓L'i4jF.jD|T4J~ꨭR+S>MB!jk53u4+53>4EA{H jCON_g7/Ҕv" z~-OFp+\)]TqUpF*W=k!H0%Jj@i2MWV"`ijijxjL wTwS&-py|'X)hZZ %H*4bݭ3TzI7Ҽ\֞M@H~c'xTNV0M9GSY>^>D8"e$%OY ri8PFI&ege+PQoCti`gؒݰ/5WX*IHbI?<W<6=W'U;\G+|csZO@pl^yc]*' zǞ>k5;]F&Ѭ)#>9+Ut)kXCZ"CA5~[]Al]I`z32 Y#N0I@,W˯{ m2oEq_ = 2ۢk0Hn]&ަpZ!7H"E[bSPҙs) "XO,hhSޠW,(`Gf|I?0zBۑ `Qy^}gj4o#i`?4M\hLM&(I4SXњc@E#sQf@h"ҎcRq@0M< ҚiOVJ Hy\KRMJC&%3ҩ9 O֮9TۜzcDr* ίSaU[M##L?R_K? tUΣmZðPV2?GAZrdR@1))c$j!O 4j!Nvj i@Nx54CphUn##Ji9>xJNbdszR'ڔ~{4̝BLtpX9ށ?L)d0'9aڣvjpsT" pf58Zvh @ zSCӇJb0\3Nx4M(⁏&M&4R)QqZx³nV^د:1lyE.Qs'ԭ’O_JK #Qkp>vpjV}ͽ^vNHT"zqS۷'Kut3EW4%s3~ 騭yQO'^+76kKЎ{|yvA! nԡ}+4\bx*sɳVFM6m FJa꧑Vkn@ҚisA7JaJgzC9/ ;EwL'; Ȯ2?|?;HLjz\.B^~%w:)'K]Zm(4M&74 4QNj4Rњni(4ӍFh4JM!sHM L'E n<ԍQH55٦pGZkQ1'qU3֮_pjzcDګtyj9 UnC3,8Wb ď6VddbGj7J2׭|>OpaR8pp5|ڔ6 nY5")*hҵ NZ`4k҃L8c$ 9ii晚QLDOih4)4vf)!zԋL^)wfM3M4 4i- 1lcux~g y'E`LiI`pq\4Z5d.!U 2'8nNMJ6mXR#T G8=M8iD dtɑBr:sKrڲпlAP g:5..XĎ6@NcI5؝<,o絙%NUш#Ez3kZTv]q*X%i!i=>?XBc-o( ;mS9s-|5ou$.9]wbZI}|~=FkZeFKLՊg.?UĚp9?k_ZeViA8Hj4 SOS> =zKRRhih p@:׷b }n PaP \ެ]8 &:}+xtydָ]0V<ޢM;ћh2BpjgYy3ZYB)}zloJvOn:FWg$+Oy/"?{_nc5^ m\quV9&@ŽҰ1/ %f4h1_K.d1SjGܧC~z3޸Pv}fEKb=lJ@N HkTAXS4qJ `Y isL 0p4S i⁎Q >Q)4q<њ4@)()(i٨҃LC(ӅS4S1}isL!Ӂ p QM?YxKEmKQY7H?CM+ RIrk>N 6bduTlezHgXl""2I1Һ+Dj@d{^C4;k0P·pgVcޡW$&6ҹO]BWÿM}8q} yⱩK)03@ h(ije!iCFiHK@  u452I4N4Hc 9m@niҚa5@)54cHM58 q T1S A|TwFSWrJ.dJsMKfsd?+U_AzscQضdǭ.}:~hkV]h|*ΐԱ`]Ɏ.-@OSҠ5?El׭D)kNF 8c <SH 85D)p4U4(SI@p x@Zx֤j<Ӂ J)ӇZ`< Q֛R恎`1R)AR%I 4њw K`5}oYMw{*o wcfI(IQeοwifMp=9?ZR[YJ$*pdi~y$rM:vՒ2yR$Uܝz$;qLVhlgUt1ZjK`xeHGZD4ڬCSzqCt8b?v8 n0zc4vȧЃRL0x'ąm5 (֛ptH9??AS5bX.Gr1nr;_Ԋ/xS\~I6'?!U{-7?U|^^jjcb; QE J`Ua^xTcY#A❚4E)ɧB H iI暴  8S;4\3J PiIQ:4>`QNFqB?4E03IJ`H =MD*@hPae5܂+xT0&IdXK;P;⯏%6R gf'W(h gҐyt#S]T۹4[ǜrj[)n[` `s@6ƛXK} &9$)8]I =j|){}mxɦNr38fDTÞA EZ5^R~B;c<e̮h 1>ӳL_jVALgJ&zYVYU,3Xɦ[NQ6qǿ[AcGZqgV#fF+,ETwDd>5/=KkL&0~8\#ēL<)N\֊ZУ<Ȩ2x@}t~dIaD&V`?sȮ`I"h&}C)ʑEH q uِC뫐IE;44f4Eq58iOJJSM& Jnis@4;4L/Jq5PM51"jF5R(i4iƘiCQ:z1@ƥzMYQUIg63W; , 9L;ےȤv8c,٦ւ2Tw"dqz❨.}W7oƛ7O26فV26/Of^jUPdzU؛J L-%OrVve)TӖ^K9ҰF /J-%;1p57%(~tXB)5`Y?:Qi&{~tr(tOE\RO:wd N2ھWg.B)Oӳ QV>ߝ(QӳҊ-_~teUarY#J-:9X\SѿeTΉqj,vݕGriqj7on-$G^_ej4 M-OlϵyߍkQ{Z+E'ɶSS\K+=,l7.W&5h)hR[BoJsrr8=+ x^Jnc8gH,3*3VF۩dáBA1(Ke>R. Q=T y-nb$lOW.w#qӷ?\$RmmI6Ա<mrF=$9xUԂ?QiQ@ E%-0E%6ٖڅ 4dG2z}A5>V;z|kօxybAi"Y?ˏOՔ4ʂl"&ycy5.V(njF?牦ar3H^ ]x L"6IG+ )5QS<BP<(GbF34d͒qir0C^)'OE.R8>OidbF;TVY=RVO%s18iҢg58t>Sj\l4DrѰJ!)AZ$ \[XTǑ~Iڇfs{&*[drj;cS\E(7)GjCֶ%l۵`Q<?S}i)[< XirYcWKnZj_5r؋VC?MԃWұM( fߕ}C:Ɣ?3GΕ?-OR=[X4oΔkW5rÈiRՍgJҿ繮Txq3U SQyL5/{/Ɨ=ڹ[7R{7N 4-ZVkOE=^<_ 'ai ^ & +B/&HR@{L9f,řMi}aڦC~UMBBù"\I?;qմHۺGj`*xh{ 4KE8\#\df\ "0wBWc!$c#\du‚1vi-ޗ[)PH]܎3k l y(@Z7*c!COM?THF ^ge8{5x:+jSR?Һ-LeWޒDAfm& []+6)7j YR5DžCsOV2,g,[d֚4gɝG>(D#̿rA]Ԫ<=V^֚yf8*rC%Z~ژD})#@R=b4m(Z{R\ʴFX)C=c4 vz?1OGOS0 EUtZ =GF?:-jʠˠ ijG@>/+XCH+⹭evDeIVV*A }#%MWEm02p=>j,yh2x=MW$W5m>LRX.;^9 *mǵ9$e<fi#W?)5*fyt 13v=@ \HП1֮^<sO$qp?ҹܤRI:PO,dUxsgޓN&sxVͭۋݶEp ch1n y&ᕅhğ u\2Nt4.bh[;C&sSF14k7gKkDQYf67fF8PiޡNSqJW r }sJMPsM#x馸YRIۧ^oM)*++FbOj;;VH77[xt>$iw\_JO0@NkrhMhDnR泿R]H* Z`m#3֮P)&2M+4Ÿgf8'#%ɉ]M.XO4sT"98+3\|nSQyoAS׊j)ڲtBpS=ٿڞ.iDLLOЊrH yඳk[yJLFXPأ5}\S~h:M!/ƛp ¬íiS}Go,Y*xgA˃R}@3a'=EQHj=E3JQ֛B@PV{Q4 ?R"mLGSZj)'"fqYrD圖ҤFUwq$Ԑ)J뚁-Q^[cq~G@2O+AF}0խ,n9 NMلNmI8:q&u@ =Eʵ /H{~il-hS$3] cANMNctA͑Xx:u+^yXR7ZO!܍J/Ξ/Ic?ryq#5(q8r8_ʝqC5 =E8^J=!ѝB؟“F.X {sSڅP9 Ϸc]}v}ZZ=r/#ɜL?P?UdGj{SsȣOZ1ə4KO*Tx*WjW۠+:{iԪ4 oʝiؑ=i֝е(EҘSҴ<:pĪ? _FrkhH?N8{|;0:i9?ߤ2HG(ލ>ѿx|S1N.d0FJ*HF:}?{g%C)%m#$`־Ww!@#E(;)iw鸒OU#RXB̸4sʻC8O'qM p v*1Th@'=vV~HnhVDAO=MM'M.b[B$d%{t]68ڷ#TZm,<]wuAjT\pX?j35{"; gUŰ <""3/?{8=;R"6#]OMy>!HM]'5i%lV/#%#`AQҰ#' 8>?R;?-|4>"Bu }U^Ǟ.3$\D:y1MNN{nI¯D(=4SI]ْF'Ks] ?V>9/"TCʸORkX~ڒABįoukLVSFc[W|F5ޱrXĭJ73BM=tkr#۬d@!b{V1Af- HT0^++3I7B2!Aҫ7ŏ]~$}}9Yx QԩưÖl<+nW; kZk%`a^/T)K-C{YN>UZŝ+=Jͭn'0 q)o,4]8bj*ondB>eX/庼YoFyȕơ֧UhC:n5\?,bW/|js6:׵.pqz4۳:>J_YZ _Z^'HQֹzeD^-dQPk M:Pi3kJ)#Zb`~%$3Q[m&hLݶ?Z~o_a,+FX$̸Ez^w$errq:uMJ6ZltsZ?L~ ˸+ 0$I4҅qocϣ,<'~&{) _ȧa[P|)stU=6Hʏ,2)7F߸>ا]џ_Z"<_8\<ڷ4xsK-  '񯒼-xTobiX2~mD'(R!%Ni&e885Oӭ=KJjjwKxTW¤]ٗ<_J)=L= `$~?CQ7;`@=AfYKdu+U{OFk3c>ƚ8Ḙ'tvhƣ;J?rI?kV 5[8 *?^/A/~uyA u;)]7/JcK)A7E@_onݏVS 4xm 9FV^Fsx2gw[sge[: 1Y/{{M+Di1ۓđ}$SS` *X|9A#kF5(T%Tv]<j2Xq\ΟE\ƐxtQы^H1S-獾UCBחCGj0?*`zSdWޭOn]MfJ<&,5xv0$ UԠ)% 7t9To+̧6Czm[S*`Ď3aI4&eO jiذSUUQP'u)PLh)#Hcԑc 1CvG#K$g&##cKVmrwWZMoVx2=Z 40s‹<mW3TZ|rwV#Z›\ ׎s\2V,^HQs,瀣֫s\ʛJOg,34or;krs֙>Tcl{TtR }zTMnR3wPǥj\%oTA'*K/Ms~*<H?;)j(RYJub3ҥg4^{L^9 Eu&e~?~ζ}y3Ѡ,trGjH]P\I]ݘ^fz&^Afbэ<ךˍܪe'%oJ֞6_:3K#:Eԫ4pIf؄TM-ZI z멧d^ \=%˳OJOVD[CuZ"q U]s@ERMFt[PcBY~!Kk[tU~5e˳r}Fdo;HN$SKMBHB 4rt!ȀNRQzU uM=3H}⾈Kz׆ ]7Xb ?G^j|\MzQضMQjjfw[}jJ 4/}EFn_U\HZnxF@ZM[֗ TsNqzj"qL4"q3޵ jLEJenm)4BLcH޴4Ԙ<ù4֘*&jb%27FҜuSX'/%#K!~:KJR 3dO=*4@Hr$?\nu>ɄPjeܻ+{նAenEP5a5we4/[]μ$,ː*m5b X[ɬ )뎵%\dKOF)wsXbARZ5H؜\Jx杚ab`iEDҤVZir)3Ea֜5JPwbVf&HiARb0aR*jx4\ bPJo3Ҡ E4kI❑i3Qn) O{`C+ LOSNW85*Rx¾"Iv@[OiPBŒ)s^NaTJ[tGA麄FR8aEQJVY-e?5ojHL"e[3Z͌oE {r\pW㎤wb͙%>s|}IDmYZGlF ʱBY'4/Rrc nњZi"$9[Vu lyvj*M nW#=G@THCMnsO*}5xOfUG_sZ-CA'+Z%Ƥv_Ck4$ El|3,I>_Zaɧ6vՙ''@F0EMO"KFPTU*Yp)7tjh)E#&Vaj=pz穌U> @ˣdG^5G3Ze(lDqB%&4S3EIM3HM%17wjFj MJbCn+s@L a٤-74! 攵FHvQRȢf.x8N*[ Iۥ͊=T.hqN Li"o XqNSRG5V 2Җ^aTsVpәE @ >&&>VͧP-KJ~٩5F?JβnW#کlN̎\ŸJV_51M&hoZ(ZCR6QCiP1(iE&QES 5 4E 4aQE0iQE EF(SN(J%SK)S"5NE=ƶ#jճoOqEKp{-~E bY
Warning: fopen(https://newsweekme.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/2016-01-16T214909Z_346432570_GF20000097344_RTRMADP_3_IRAN-NUCLEAR-780x439.jpg): failed to open stream: HTTP wrapper does not support writeable connections in /home/newsweekme/public_html/wp-includes/class-wp-image-editor.php on line 428

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has signed a series of documents, including the certification to the U.S. government that IAEA had certified Iran's compliance in their report and waivers to implement the lifting of the U.S. Congressional nuclear-related sanctions. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

By Lesley Wroughton and Yeganeh Torbati

VIENNA/WASHINGTON, Jan 17  – Iran emerged from years of economic isolation on Saturday when world powers lifted crippling sanctions against the Islamic Republic in return for Tehran complying with a deal to curb its nuclear ambitions.

In a dramatic move scheduled to coincide with the scrapping of the sanctions, Tehran also announced the release of five Americans including Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian as part of a prisoner swap with the United States.

Together, the lifting of sanctions and the prisoner deal considerably reduce the hostility between Tehran and Washington that has shaped the Middle East since Iran‘s Islamic Revolution of 1979.

Tens of billions of dollars worth of Iranian assets will now be unfrozen and global companies that have been barred from doing business there will be able to exploit a market hungry for everything from automobiles to airplane parts.

The U.N. nuclear watchdog ruled on Saturday that Iran had abided by an agreement last year with six world powers to curtail its nuclear programme, triggering the end of sanctions.

Iran has carried out all measures required under the (July deal) to enable Implementation Day (of the deal) to occur,” the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency said in a statement.

Within minutes, the United States formally lifted banking, steel, shipping and other sanctions onIran, a major oil producer which has been virtually shut out of international markets for the past five years.

The European Union also began the process of lifting sanctions and Iran‘s transport minister said Tehran plans to buy 114 civil aircraft from European aircraft maker Airbus.

The end of sanctions means more money and prestige for Shiite Muslim Iran as it becomes deeply embroiled in the sectarian conflicts of the Middle East, notably in the Syrian civil war where its allies are facing Sunni Muslim rebels.

America’s thaw with Iran is viewed with deep suspicion by U.S. Republicans as well as American allies in the Middle East, including Israel and Saudi Arabia. U.S.-Iranian suspicion still remains deeply entrenched.

Washington maintains separate, less comprehensive sanctions on Iran over its missile program. For its part, Iran detained 10 U.S. Navy sailors on two boats in the Gulf a week ago, although they were released the next day.

DRAMATIC PRISONER DEAL

In an unusual move, President Barack Obama pardoned three Iranian-Americans charged for violating sanctions against Iran, a lawyer for one of the men said, while prosecutors moved to drop charges against four Iranians outside the United States.

Iran agreed to free five Americans including Rezaian and Saeed Abedini, an Iranian-American Christian pastor sentenced to eight years in prison in 2013 on charges of undermining Iran‘s national security.

But a U.S. official said four of the Americans had not yet left Iran due to ongoing logistical issues. The fifth prisoner, Matthew Trevithick, has left the country after 40 days in prison. Trevithick, a student and journalist, had travelled and worked in conflict-torn nations including Syria, Mali and Afghanistan.

The prisoner deal was the culmination of months of diplomatic contacts, secret talks and legal manoeuvring which came close to falling apart because of a threat by Washington in December to impose fresh sanctions on Iran for recent ballistic missile tests.

The detente with Iran is opposed by all of the Republican candidates vying to succeed Obama as president in an election in November.

Republican front-runner Donald Trump said at a campaign event that he was happy Americans were being freed, “but I will tell you it’s a disgrace that they were there for so long.”

Ted Cruz, a conservative senator from Texas and one of the leading Republicans, tweeted in support of Abedini’s release: “Praise God! Surely bad parts of Obama’s latest deal, but prayers of thanksgiving that Pastor Saeed is coming home.”

Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton took credit for helping to start the sanctions pressure on Iran during her 2009-2013 tenure as Obama’s secretary of state.

“These are important steps that make the United States, our allies, and the entire world safer. I congratulate President Obama and his team, and I’m proud of the role I played to get this process started,” she said in a statement.

Clinton also urged new sanctions on Tehran over its ballistic missile testing program.

Iran‘s return to an already glutted oil market is one of the factors contributing to a global rout in oil prices, which fell below $30 a barrel this week for the first time in 12 years.

Tehran says it could boost exports by 500,000 barrels per day within weeks.

The end of sanctions marks a crowning achievement for Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, a pragmatic cleric elected in 2013 in a landslide on a promise to reduce Iran‘s international isolation.

The economic measures, mostly imposed in the last five years, had cut off the country of 80 million people from the global financial system, slashed Iran‘s exports and imposed severe economic hardship on ordinary Iranians.

Rouhani was granted the authority to negotiate the deal by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, an arch-conservative in power since 1989.

Iran denies its nuclear programme was aimed at obtaining an atomic bomb.

Rouhani congratulated the Iranian nation on Saturday after the news that sanctions were to be lifted.

“Thank God for this blessing and bow to the greatness of the patient nation of Iran. Congrats on this glorious victory,” Rouhani tweeted in English.

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has argued, including in a New York Times op-ed column last week, that Iran wants to help the global fight against Sunni Muslim militants like Islamic State and al Qaeda.

“It’s now time for all — especially Muslim nations – to join hands and rid the world of violent extremism. Iran is ready,” Zarif tweeted on Saturday.

Social Streams

Comments

comments

Facebook Comments

Post a comment